Living in Brisbane, blackouts happen on a regular basis, especially in the summertime. So many people using fans or air conditioning at the same time can overload the system, so there are times when energy companies will plan rolling blackouts to control the high electricity needs. Dawson Electric has put together some tips in how to prepare for a blackout and stay safe during one.
Put Together an Emergency Kit
An Emergency Kit should be a must-have for every household. Having an emergency kit with food, water, flashlights, and a first aid kit can ensure that you are prepared if anything happens. If a blackout does occur, it is suggested that you should have enough items to last 72 hours (just in case, obviously). These include a flashlight with batteries, a portable radio with batteries, enough water to supply 2 litres of water per person per day, non-perishable foods and canned goods, extra clothing, board games and cards to pass the time, first aid kit, and more.
Prepare for Power Surges
Power surges are a regular occurrence during blackouts, given the power grid tends to become unstable. Power surges can not only destroy your electronics but can be quite dangerous given their unpredictability. So, unplug and switch off all electronic devices in your home during a blackout. It is suggested to leave one light on, so you’ll know when the power is restored.
Protect Your Refrigerated Food
When there is a blackout, you should try to avoid opening the refrigerator or freezer unless absolutely necessary (especially in the summertime). Keep the refrigerator doors closed to keep the cold air in and the warm air out. Depending on the weather, a refrigerator full of food should stay cold for at least 4 to 6 hours and a freezer an entire day or longer. If you think the food has gone off, and chances are you will smell it if it has, throw it away.
Find Ways to Stay Occupied
The world today is flooded with different types of electronic devices to keep people entertained. If the power goes off, a lot of these devices won’t be usable, and you want to avoid being on your phone for too long in case it is needed for an emergency. It is best to be prepared with ways to stay busy by finding activities that don’t involve a power point. These might include:
- Board games
- Playing cards
Know When to Leave
Sometimes there is no other choice but to leave your home. If a situation becomes unbearable, and you need to be ready to make that decision. If the power has been out for a few days and the heat becomes overwhelming, then it might be time to find you and your family some place to stay until the electric utility restores power. These could be:
- A family member or friend who still has working electricity.
- Check-in at a local emergency shelter. If the situation is worse than expected, councils tend to set up emergency shelters for those affected by the situation.
- Spend a night or two in a hotel. Depending on your budget, it might be worthwhile just spending a couple of nights in a hotel.
If you do intend to leave, it is imperative that you tell your family and extended family where you are going so that someone knows where you are.
Need help after blackout? Contact Us and one of our experienced electricians can make sure all your electrical needs are back up and running.