Are You Prepared?
Make sure you have a “Personal” and a “Household” emergency kit in case of a lengthy power outage or other natural event. When planning for your “Kits”, you should plan for 3 or 4 days rather than shorter periods. While you may not exhaust the supplies in a shorter event, it is better to be safe than sorry!
Personal Emergency Kits
For your “Personal Kit”, consider either a 5-gallon bucket or a backpack… something that you can easily grab-n-go with. Surprisingly, you can fit a lot of supplies in either of these containers. All of the things you see in the adjacent photograph fit in the 5-gallon bucket labeled “Personal Kit”.
While you can pack anything you like, we have shown and listed things that we feel are essential. It is recommended that each member of the household have their “OWN KIT”. Remember, during extended outages, you need to think about survival-type items, not vacation or picnic pleasantries.
In this kit are some basic items: Bottled Water, Trail Mix, Canned Goods, Dried Foods, Energy Bars, Water-proof Matches, Blanket, Flashlight & Batteries, Paper Products, Hand Cleaner & Baby Wipes, Playing Cards and a Rain Slicker or Spa Blanket. These items are only suggestions. Other items you might choose to include are a pocket knife, duct-tape and plastic eating utensils. There is no right or wrong answer – you know what you need in the case of an extended event.
Household Emergency Kits
Your “Household Kit” will have some of the same items included in your “Personal Kit” and may require a bit more space than a 5-gallon bucket or a backpack… but it still should be something that you can easily grab-n-go with. Remember, during an extended outage, be thinking about basic necessities, not the comforts of home.
Following are some “additional” basics for your “Household Kit”: First Aid Kit, Battery Operated Cell Phones & Laptop Computers, Battery Operated or Solar Radio, Camp Stove w/ extra fuel bottles, Candles, and a Battery Operated Lantern.
You may want to consider an inexpensive Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) to charge your cell phone or laptop battery. Make sure it is always charged and ready to go. Remember, there is no wrong answer – you know what you need in the case of an extended event.
Things To Remember
For more information on building your emergency kits, you can also go to: oregonpacific.redcross.org.
Before You Turn Your Water Heater On
You Can Help
Please, Please, Please
Let the repair crews do their job. While it’s tempting to stop crews and ask questions about when the power is going to be restored, this only delays the restoration process. Remember that while the crews want to be helpful, they also want to restore your power quickly so they too can get home to their families.
Be A Good Neighbor
Severe storms usually increase the number of accidents and medical problems. Remember this increases the response time for service agencies. You may want to organize people in your area to check on each other and lend assistance.
Never wire a portable generator directly into your electrical panel. If not installed correctly, portable generators can cause fatal accidents involving the workers on the lines. Plug any appliances into the generator. DO NOT connect household breaker circuits to the generator without a “double-throw switch” installed by a licensed electrician.