HOW TO PREPARE FOR A POWER OUTAGE
You should have the following items on hand to prepare for a possible power outage:
· Flashlights with batteries
· Battery-powered radios and clocks
· Extra batteries
· Containers of water or bottled water
· Canned, dehydrated or freeze-dried food
· Manual can opener
· First-aid kit
· List of important phone numbers to contact in emergencies. Make sure that you have a back-up telephone if you use a cordless or other telephone that is dependent on electricity.
Additional preparations can include:
· Preparing alternative sources of heat (such as buying a home generator or stocking wood for a fireplace or wood stove);
· Learning how to manually open an electric garage door;
· Checking medications that require refrigeration; and
· Using bags or blocks of ice to maintain cold temperatures in the refrigerator and freezer.
Anyone in the household who uses electronically operated life-support or medical monitoring equipment should register with their utility company as a “life support” customer and have a back-up plan in the event of a prolonged power outage.
WHAT TO DO DURING A MAJOR STORM
During a major storm that threatens to disrupt power, Connecticut residents should take the following recommended actions:
· Turn refrigerator and freezer dials up to their highest settings to keep frozen and refrigerated items cold (dials will need to be turned back to their normal operating settings when power is restored);
· Unplug sensitive electronic equipment in the household such as TVs, computers, VCRs, microwave ovens, etc. to prevent damage during a lightning storm;
· Shut off or unplug all major appliances that are not in current use;
· Fill bathtubs and spare containers with water if the house has a well and water pump that could be damaged in a storm;
· Keep a battery-operated radio on handy with fresh batteries to listen to news items about the storm and updates on restoration of power;
· Stay away from downed power lines and any object that are in contact with the lines;
· If heat is unavailable in the household, contact the local chapter of the Red Cross or local fire or police department for the location of the nearest emergency shelter.
HOW POWER GETS RESTORED
During a major power outage, utility companies work with local town officials to identify priorities in restoring power service. Usually, fire and police stations, hospitals, shelters, water and sewage treatment plants receive highest priority. After that, any damaged substations, main electric lines and wires must be repaired before power can be restored to individual houses and streets. Until then, utility companies urge the public to be patient and to be as well prepared as possible.
INSTALLING A BACKUP GENERATOR
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