When the power goes out due to a storm, accident, or human error, it can be stressful. Even people who live in areas without extreme weather will occasionally lose power. Knowing how to prepare for a power outage makes a difference in your safety and comfort, especially if you have to go a few days without electricity. Here are a few ways you can be better prepared.
1. Prepare for a Power Outage with Lighting
Lighting makes a difference when it comes to feeling comfortable and safe. Keep several flashlights on hand and have fresh batteries available. Ideally, there should be one flashlight for each member of your household. Store a flashlight in an easy-to-access location on each level of your home. This way you’ll have access to light as soon as the power goes out.
Headlamps are perfect for hands-free lighting. Keep candles on hand but never leave them unattended. For an extended power outage, you can use the solar lights from your landscaping. Charge them outdoors during the day and bring them inside to provide light during the evening.
2. Have Shelf-Stable Foods
You may not be able to cook when the power is out so it’s good to always have a few food options available. Be prepared with shelf-stable foods like granola bars, dried fruit, canned foods, jerky, and similar items. Some pre-prepared meals only require hot water. A small camp stove and fuel is a great way to heat water and canned foods. To build the most basic kit, include enough food for each person for one day.
3. Stock Up on Water to Prepare for a Power Outage
If the power goes out, an electric water pump won’t be able to move water into your home. Plan to have a gallon of water for every person in the household for each day. Purchase a few gallons of water and store them in the basement until they’re needed. Replace the water often so you’re always ready.
4. Plan Activities and Entertainment
When the power goes out, you may find yourself without much to do. Many of our day-to-day activities require electricity. Board games and books are two easy options for kids and adults. If the weather is nice, plan for some outdoor activities.
To prepare for a power outage, put together a plan for your family. Make sure everyone knows where emergency items are located. Check your survival supplies every couple of months to verify that food products have not expired and that flashlights work. Hopefully, you won’t often have to use your emergency kit but if you do, you’ll be glad you took the time to prepare.