Power Outage Safety

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Paper cutouts of houses

What to do if the power is out for an extended period of time:

  • Try not to open your refrigerator/freezer often to keep food from spoiling.
  • Disconnect appliances and electronics to avoid damage from electrical surges.
  • Have alternate plans for refrigerating medicines or using power-dependent medical devices. If safe, go to an alternate location for heat or cooling.
  • Check on neighbours.
  • Avoid carbon monoxide poisoning. Generators, camp stoves, or charcoal grills should always be used outdoors and at least 20 feet away from windows.
  • Never use a gas stovetop or oven to heat your home.

Are you prepared for a power outage? Here are some tips that could help.

  • Sign up for local weather and emergency alerts
  • Pack an emergency preparedness kit with some essentials, such as non-perishable food, bottled water, batteries, battery operated radio, flashlights, candles, matches, blankets and whatever else you may need
  • If you have medical equipment powered by electricity, speak to your doctor about a power outage plan.
  • Install carbon monoxide detectors with battery backup in central locations on every level of your home.
  • Determine whether your home phone will work in a power outage and how long battery backup will last.
  • Use a thermometer in the refrigerator and freezer so that you can know the temperature when the power is restored. If the temperature is higher than 4ºC (40ºF), follow Health Canada standards for safe food storage.
  • Keep mobile phones and other electric equipment charged and gas tanks full.

You can find more information about what to do and how to prepare for a power outage on the Government of Canada’s Get Prepared Webpage.