11 Tips to Help During a Winter Power Outage

Camber OntiverosFamily Safety, Home Safety and Security

Power outages often happen during severe winter storms. Homeowners can be without power for hours or even days, yikes! And, according to Munich Re., winter storms caused an estimated $1 billion in insured losses in just 2016. When temperatures drop and the power is out, this is how you keep your family safe.

  1. Never keep a generator in an enclosed area- Generator exhaust releases carbon monoxide (CO) gas, which has no scent and is deadly. Ready.gov recommends keeping generators at least 20 feet from doors, windows, and vents. If you have a backup generator, make sure it is a well ventilated space and invest in CO detectors for your alarm system. Contact us to learn how you can add carbon monoxide monitoring to your alarm.
  2. Make sure you have your necessary prescription medicines- If a strong storm is approaching, be sure to check on your supply of your daily prescription medications. Travel may be limited and pharmacies may be closed in your area once the storm approaches.
  3. Stock bottled water and nonperishable food- Power often goes out for unknown lengths of time during storms. Be sure to have several days worth of bottled water and nonperishable food available for each member of your household.
  4. Keep important items on hand- If power is out in your home, it’s important that you still feel safe and in control of your situation. Try to have these items easily accessible: manual can opener, flashlight, extra batteries, utensils, eyeglasses, and hearing aids.
  5. Stay warm- If your heat goes out during a storm, it’s important to keep your body temperature regulated. Have clean blankets ready to use. NOAA recommends wearing layers of loose-fitting and lightweight clothes.
  6. Stay indoors- It is important to stay indoors during an active storm. Storms can quickly become very dangerous, avoid leaving your home if possible.
  7. Insulation- If power is out, it’s important to keep the existing heat inside. Cover windows with plastic, close doors in your home and if your home isn’t seal proof you can stuff towels in door cracks to prevent cold air from spreading.    
  8. Use space heaters safely- When using a space heater keep it several feet away from fabrics, curtains, and furniture.
  9. Check on neighbors- If possible, check on your neighbors- especially elderly neighbors who may need help securing their home during a winter storm.
  10. Have a backup charger available for your phone- Keep a solar or battery powered charger on hand if the power goes out. If an emergency arises you’ll have your cell phone available to make calls or to use the Rescu app.
  11. Check on your alarm backup battery- An alarm system battery will usually last anywhere between 8-12 hours when fully charged. A Helix alarm system battery will last 24 hours.

If you need emergency assistance during a winter storm or power outage, you can call our Central Station any time, our operators are available 24/7. For extra peace of mind download Rescu to keep your family and home protected during any emergency.