Are You Ready for an Ice Storm?

map1Accumulated ice on power lines and trees means the inevitable — power outages.  Below are some tips on surviving without electricity.  Please note that your gas furnace needs electricity to start.  Found that out the hard way.

CONTACT POWER COMPANY – ONCE (everyone else will be doing the same thing).
Have your power company’s number stored. If and when the power outage does occurs, inform them (once will do) and they’ll give you an estimate of when you can expect to get electricity back. Knowledge is power.

Cobb Emc – CALL 770-429-2100 follow automated prompts.  Crews are instantly notified.  You will need your 10-digit account number or the 10 digit phone number listed on your account when calling.

GEORGIA POWER emergency number 888-891-0938.

LIGHT
Gather all the things that may provide light, such as a flashlight, candles, glowsticks, etc., and place them in an easily accessible area. Attach iridescent or glow in the dark stickers on flashlights so that they can be easily located in little or no light. Keep glowsticks in the freezer. The cool temperature in your freezer will slow the rate of reaction in the glowstick and make it last for 4-5 days instead of one or two. Stick candles in pots that are deeper than the candle is long. That way, the light will reflect off of the side of the pot, creating more light, and will lessen the likelihood of a fire.

SELF-POWERED – get self-powered radios and self-powered flashlights. Self-powered radios and flashlights employ a hand crank to get the device going, so it’s a good alternative to have if you happen to run out of batteries. Radios will help you stay informed of what’s happening. Try to keep abreast of what’s happening in the case of severe storms, as the authorities might issue an evacuation notice or other pertinent information. Radios will also be a good distraction for when your other distractions aren’t up an running. When your TV and computer won’t turn on, you can always settle for a entertainment on the radio waves.

CAR CHARGERS Have car chargers for your cell phone. So the electricity won’t work, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use your car as one big battery. Be careful not to kill your car battery when you’re charging your phone. Not being able to start your car is probably more problematic than not being able to start your cell phone.

FOOD Stock your pantry with non-perishable (canned) foods and water. It’s always nice to know that if your food source runs out, for whatever reason, you have a backup nearby. As a general rule, keep enough food to last your family for a week. Soup, chili, vegetables, and fruits are all popular choices. Be sure to have a mechanical can opener nearby. Keep three weeks’ worth of water in storage. Humans can live without food for prolonged periods, but water is more essential. In dire situations, the water coming from the faucet may be tainted, and you’ll have to rely on a bottled source.

COOKING – Purchase a small gas camping stove. ONE THAT SAYS OKAY TO USE INDOORS. If your kitchen stove is all electric, it obviously won’t work during a power outage and you’ll have to rely on another means of cooking.  Keep propane tanks  in storage. In wet weather conditions, propane is probably preferable. Know how to fit the propane tank into the grill beforehand, so that you’re not learning the roles in a more serious situation. Never use a barbeque grill in an enclosed area, as it may cause carbon monoxide or dioxide poisoning.

EXTRA WATER
Fill spare space in your refrigerator with water bottles. Frozen water bottles in your freezer will act like ice blocks and keep it frozen longer while the power is off. When they thaw out you will have a fresh supply of drinking water.  Have extra bottles on hand.

CONSERVE CELL PHONE BATTERY
Use a landline Telephone instead of your cell phone. (IF YOU REMEMBER THE NUMBERS YOU NEED TO CALL).  Any one have the most important ones written down – if not do so.