Prepare for a power outage

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Even a rare power outage can be a problem if it catches you with run-down electronics. Even worse is if you rely on medical equipment that requires electricity. A long outage can ruin your refrigerated food, leave you without cooling/heating or even lead to interruption in your water supply. Be prepared for these events, which are likely to occur more often with more frequent extreme climate events.


• Consider having enough backup battery power to recharge your mobile phone at least a couple of times and a flashlight. Home lights, internet, and larger appliances will require backup solutions with more capacity. To help with that you might consider looking into a home battery storage system.

• If you own an e-bike or other larger battery-powered device, its battery might have a USB outlet for charging smaller devices. You will find it packs a lot of power!

• Candles and oil lamps are fire hazards. Keep them handy, but be smart about their usage and do not leave them unattended when lit.

• Keep in mind that an extended outage may close retail businesses, grocery stores, banks, and other services. Think about if that may be a problem and make your household more resilient for those circumstances.

• If you have elderly neighbors, ask if they need help preparing for an emergency, too, especially if they rely on electricity to use medical equipment in their homes.

During the outage itself:

• Keep your refrigerator closed to preserve its cooling power for as long as possible.

• Unplug unnecessary appliances, and sensitive electronics to prevent overloaded circuits when power is restored.

• Realize that you may want to fill your bathtub with water if widespread power outages are predicted and there is a risk it will impact your water supply. A clean bathtub is an important piece of insurance!

• Check on your neighbors. Bad times build good connections!

• If the outage is due to cold, and your heat goes out with it, leave your sink dripping to keep the water moving to avoid them freezing and bursting.

• If extreme heat or cold becomes too much to handle at your home, consider going to a local shelter, which should have a backup energy source. Figure out where these shelters likely would be ahead of time in case you will not be able to look them up online.

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