You’re sitting at home, enjoying an evening with your family, when you’re suddenly plunged into darkness. The power has gone out.

Most of us simply stumble around for a flashlight or a candle, waiting for the lights to come back on. But did you know there’s more to it than that?

While most outages are short, others can drag out for an extended period of time. There are things you should do to ensure your family stays safe.

Let’s look at these six tips you should know about when the power goes out.

1. Use Safe Alternative Lighting

Have a fresh supply of flashlights and battery-operated lanterns stored in an area easy to get to. Along with plenty of extra batteries.

Having a flashlight for each member of your family will help everyone move around safely in the dark.

And if you use candles, make sure they remain stationary in jars. Place them in areas away from flammable material where they can’t get knocked over.

2. Unplug All Appliances and Electronics

Go around the house and unplug all your appliances and electronics. This includes your computers, TVs, gaming systems, and anything with a sensitive electronic component.

Powers surges can occur when the power comes back on. So you want to make sure you protect your items from getting damaged from spikes in your home’s electrical currents.

3. Keep the Refrigerator and Freezer Closed

Cold food will only last a short time in a power outage before it spoils and becomes too dangerous to eat. Refrigerated food can last two to four hours, while a full freezer could last up to 48 hours.

Maintain the temperature for as long as you can by keeping the doors closed.

4. Secure Your House

Unfortunately, thieves like to use the darkness as an opportunity to take what isn’t theirs.

Go around the house and lock all windows and doors. Bring pets indoors with you.

And if anyone comes knocking at your door, be sure of who it is before opening it. If they claim they’re from the power company, ask to see proof through a peephole or window first.

5. Avoid Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

You should never use generators, charcoal grills, and camps stoves in the house. Keep them outside, at least 20 feet from any windows.

And never use a gas stove as a heat source during a power outage.

To protect your family at all times, make sure the carbon monoxide detectors in your home run on batteries.

6. Check on Your Neighbors

The elderly and little children are vulnerable during power outages. If it’s safe for you to go outside, it’s a good idea to make sure your neighbors are okay. Help them set up their home properly for the outage.

And if you aren’t able to check on them in person, give them a call. You’ll at least be able to walk them through what to do.

Play It Safe When the Power Goes out

Power outages can be an unpleasant surprise for anyone. But knowing what to do when the power goes out will keep you and your family safe.

Need help making sure your family is ready for the next power outage? Contact us today! We’d be happy to answer any questions, update your surge protection, or help in any way we can.