Be prepared for winter storms
We’re accustomed to the damage that spring and summer storms can wreak; don’t forget, though, that the ice and wind of winter can be just as dangerous and just as harmful. In the event of an outage, we’re prepared to restore power as quickly as it’s safe to do so.
Are you prepared to weather the storm? Here are some storm preparedness reminders:
- Charge (and keep charged) electronic devices – phones, tablets, laptops, cordless radios, flashlights
- Restock batteries of all sizes
- Make a plan. If anyone in your family has special needs, be prepared to move if you’re faced with an extended outage.
- Check on elderly family members or neighbors to make sure they are warm and safe.
- Check your pantry for non-perishable foods, and be sure you have a manual can opener if you plan to eat canned foods.
- Do you have a well? If so, you might want to be sure you have plenty of water on hand in case your pump doesn’t work
- Plan to have one gallon of water per person per day
- Make sure your car’s gas tank is full. You may want to use your car to charge a cell phone, so having a full tank of gas is important for many reasons
- Make certain that your preparedness kit includes cards, board games and books/magazines
- If you plan to use alternative heating sources, make sure you’ve read the instructions and are familiar with all safety precautions.
- If the sun is shining, open drapes or blinds of south-facing windows & allow the sun to warm your rooms. Once the sun is gone, close blinds and drapes to hold the warmth in. If possible, hang blankets over windows at night to further contain the warm air.
- Limit the number of times you open a refrigerator or freezer.
- ALWAYS consider downed power lines, as well as anything touching them, to be energized and dangerous. Do not go near them, and don’t touch anything making contact with them. Contact your electric co-op if you spot downed power lines.
- Never bring a charcoal grill inside your home – for cooking or heating purposes. Burning charcoal emits carbon monoxide, a deadly and silent gas.
- Close off unused rooms in your home.
- Dress in layers, and wrap in blankets to hold in the heat.
- Place rolled up blankets or towels at the base of doors or windows if you can feel cold air coming in. Make a note, and seal those areas when the weather improves.
- If your power goes out, turn off as many appliances, lights and electronics as possible. Wait a few minutes after the power is restored before turning things back on.
- If the power goes out, ATMs won’t dispense money. Have some cash on hand.
- A full freezer will stay frozen for up to 48 hours if you keep the door closed.
- Perishable foods in the refrigerator will need to be consumed; use a food thermometer to make sure food temperatures stay below 40 degrees.
- Last modified: Tuesday, October 11, 2016
Rob Ford is Communication Director for Tipmont REMC.