Here are some tips to help keep you and your loved ones safe when the power goes out unexpectedly.
- Avoid downed power lines - always assume they are energized and therefore dangerous. Call 911 to report downed power lines.
- Reduce the risk of fire - Use flashlights instead of candles as a light source. Make sure to stock your emergency kit with flashlights and fresh batteries.
- Prevent carbon monoxide poisoning - Only use items like generators and BBQs outdoors.
- Be water smart - Check with your municipality to ensure your water is safe to drink. If you're unsure, use the water in your emergency kit.
- Let the weather guide you - If the weather is hot, stay cool and hydrated. If the weather is cold, layer up clothing and blankets to keep body heat in.
- Practice food safety - Keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed as much as possible. A full freezer will keep food safe for up to 48 hours. That number drops to 24 hours if the freezer is half full. Remember: If in doubt, throw it out.
How To Prepare for Planned Outages
Put Together an Emergency Kit
Prepare an emergency kit ahead of time and make sure everyone in the family knows where it is located. Your kit should include the following items:
- Water (at least 2 L per person/day)
- Dried and canned food
- A manual can opener
- Wind up or battery-operated radio
- A supply of cash
- Prescription medicines and first aid supplies
- A non-cordless phone
Visit the Waterloo Region Emergency Management Centre and Emergency Preparedness Ontario website for tips on making an emergency preparedness action plan and kit.
Do you know someone who needs power to run their medical equipment? Make sure they are on our Medical Alert list.