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Tips and hints in the event of a power outage
1. Switch it off:
If the power goes off, it is safer to turn off or disconnect any electrical appliances that you were using, since a power surge may occur when the electricity is restored. It is always useful to keep one light switched 'on' to alert you when the power returns.
2. What is not be affected by power outages?
3. Useful tips to minimise inconvenience when the power is off:
- Security systems that have battery back-up (some may go off due to the interruption).
- Telephones that are not reliant on electricity mains (answering, fax machines and some cordless telephones may however, be affected).
- Cell phones
- Ensure that your cell phone is always fully charged when power is available.
- Ensure that your vehicle always has fuel in the tank since during power outages, petrol stations cannot pump fuel
- Ensure that you have adequate cash as auto tellers cannot operate without electricity.
- Release automatic electric garage door mechanisms to allow you to gain access to your property during a power outage
- Release electric security gates and switch to manual operation to avoid either being locked out or locked into your home
- Keep temporary lighting, such as candles and electric torches readily available.
- Keep a torch (with fresh batteries) by your bedside at all times
- Obtain a small LP gas lamp, as they provide good quality lighting for a large area
- Boil water and keep in hot water flasks for hot drinks for when the power is scheduled to be switched off
- Use a thermal cover on tea pots and other pots and pans to keep hot drinks, soup and other hot meals warm
- Prepare meals beforehand in readiness for periods when there will be power cuts
- Obtain a stand-by bottled LP gas heating ring for essential cooking and to boil water for hot beverages
- Keep adequate stocks of essential foodstuffs that do not need to be refrigerated
- Keep refrigerator doors closed, as a power outage of up to four hours should not cause food spoilage, and a freezer should keep frozen food safe for at least a day. It is a good idea to have available alternative snacks that do not need refrigeration
- Most medication requiring refrigeration can be kept in a closed fridge for several hours without spoiling. To be sure about this, check with your doctor or pharmacist
- Fill plastic containers with water, leaving some space inside each container for expansion during freezing in a deep-freeze or the freezer compartment of your fridge. This frozen water will help keep food cold during a power outage