Winter hit hard and fast this year. This week, every state in the country has experienced below-freezing weather, and for some there seems to be no end in sight. The folks up in Buffalo, New York are buried under five feet of snow and expecting more over the next few days. Many areas are under a blanket of snow and ice. And it’s only November, which means we have several more months of cold weather to look forward to. With all of this in mind, we should be preparing for all the inconveniences and dangers this kind of weather brings–including power outages.
Power outage is a reality for many people every winter. These outages can last hours, days, or even months. It’s easy to feel helpless during a power outage. We rely so much on electricity and the power grid that we tend to panic when it goes out.
But as we know, only those who aren’t prepared have any need for panic. The rest of us take precautions and make sure we’re ready for whatever might happen, including a winter power outage.
Ready your Home for a Power Outage
Don’t wait for an outage to happen to start searching for blankets, candles and flashlights. You’ll end up stumbling around in the dark trying to gather what you need. The best way is to stock up on lighting materials and other necessities in your emergency kit such as kerosene lamps, long-burning candles, flashlights and DIY torches. Don’t forget to keep matches, lighters and water proof batteries of various sizes.
Here are some more tips to help you ready your home for a power outage. Click here for the full post.
How to Prepare Your Household for a Power Outage
Everyone can remember the media outrage following Hurricane Katrina; New Orleans became a hotbed for violent criminal behavior long after the event. Catastrophes, natural and otherwise, that destroy our power sources and leave us in the dark elicit an ugly and familiar behavior in some: looting and theft. And while few natural disasters meet the tragedy of Hurricane Katrina, any event that takes away our power can leave us instantly exposed. Even those of us prepared with a home alarm system lacking an alternative power source can be invaded the moment our power fails. Here are a few tips to prepare your home for safety the next time you experience a power outage at home.
1. Have a plan ready with your family
Before a power outage happens, the best step you can take to make sure your family remains safe is to have a plan prepared. This includes:
plenty of unrefrigerated food
a water source/supply
an emergency kit including flashlights and medical supplies
reserve clothes and bedding
at least one alternative source of power
Your family should have a plan, including common routes and meeting locations. If anyone becomes lost, they should know where to find everyone. Another important aspect to assess in your plan is how long your household can survive in case the power outage is for an extended period of time; there should be a predetermined day in which you leave when you pass that number of days. If you have a nearby neighbor you trust, make arrangements with them. In survival situations, there is always strength in numbers.
2. Prepare different sources of light
For most criminals, a dark house equals an exposed house. It provides cover, allows easy access to your home, and indicates that any security measures you’ve equipped are likely now unplugged. Deter criminals and maintain your sanity by keeping plenty of alternative light sources somewhere specific that every member of your family is aware of, like a pantry or storage closet. Oil/battery operated lanterns, long-burning candles or fireplaces are potential ways to keep your home alight enough to deter crooks targeting a seemingly vacant defenseless home. Keeping motion sensing lights hooked to a generator at night for your lawn is an excellent precaution.
If budget permits, it would be a plus to invest on solar panels, garden stake solar lights and solar lanterns. With or without an outage these fixtures are definitely beneficial making the home bright and completely lighted without the charges, pun intended.
In the absence of lighting devices, firewood is the cheapest and easiest material to prepare. The burning flames coming from firewood can also be a signal to a team of rescuers who are searching for victims to save. Actually, firewood is an all-in-one emergency tool because it functions as a fuel for cooking, heating and light.
Light is essential during a disaster because this allows faster rescue operations and quick first-aid administration during night time. Even the smallest flashlight can aid in an emergency during a power outage.
We rely on power for so much in our lives. Living without it, even if only for a few hours, is a huge inconvenience–and for longer periods of time, it’s extremely dangerous