In Georgia we can experience a variety of weather catastrophes: ice storms, tornadoes, severe thunderstorms, hurricanes, tropical storms, floods, etc. All of these can cause extended power outages. When outages do occur, we respond immediately and works as quickly as possible to restore your service.
Before an outage occurs prepare your home and family. Having a plan and emergency supplies on hand can help you and your family better weather the storm. The following information was reprinted by permission from the Environmental Hazards Management Institute.
How Will I Be Warned of An Emergency?
Where Are My Community's Emergency Shelters?
Prepare A Disaster Supply Kit
A disaster supply kit can be useful if you become confined to your home, are without power for an extended time, or must evacuate as a result of severe weather. Keep it updated and readily accessible for safety, comfort, and convenience. It is especially important if you have a baby , small children or pets in the home. All household members should know where it is stored. Replace food, water, medical supplies and batteries as needed. Pack the essential items you may need if you have to evacuate your home in an easy to carry container. The following information offers a general supply list and tips. For a supply check list to print out for a shopping & packing guide click here.
3 gallons/person, minimum in a food-grade plastic container
Additional Water for Sanitation
Minimum 3-day supply of non-perishable food that requires no refrigeration, or preparation, and little or no water, for example:
Quick energy snacks
Ready-to-eat canned meats
Ready-to-eat soups (not concentrated)
First Aid Kit (one for your home and one for each car)
Assorted sizes of safety pins
Triangular bandages (3)
2" sterile gauze pads (4-6)
4" sterile gauze pads (4-6)
2" and 3" sterile roller bandages (3 rolls each)
Tube of petroleum jelly or other lubricant
Sterile adhesive bandages in assorted sizes
Latex Gloves (2 pair)
Tools & Supplies
Matches in a waterproof container
Assorted nails, wood screws
Pliers, screwdriver, hammer
Plastic storage containers
Heavy cotton or hemp rope
Cash or traveler's checks, change
Non-electric can opener, utility knife
Patch kit and can of seal-in-air for tires
Mess kits, or paper cups, plates and plastic utensils
Duct tape, duct and plumber's tape or strap iron
Map of the area (for locating shelters)
Shut-off wrench, to turn off household gas & water
Household chlorine bleach
Soap, liquid detergent
Personal hygiene items
Plastic bucket with tight lid
Toilet paper, towelettes, paper towels
Plastic garbage bags, ties (for personal sanitation uses)
Family Medical Needs
Contact lenses and supplies
Heart and high blood pressure medication
Aspirin or non-aspirin pain reliever
Activated Charcoal and Syrup of Ipecac (use if adviced by the Poison Control Center)
Clothing & Bedding
Hat and gloves
Sturdy shoes or work boots
Blankets or sleeping bags
One complete change of clothing & footwear per person
Formula (ready made or include bottled water to make)
Sterilized bottle drop-ins or bags
Powdered milk for older babies
3-day supply of non-perishable food
Leash, harness or carrier
Records of vaccinations
Non-tippable food and water containers
Pet Carriers if available
Important Family Documents
Copy of will, insurance policies, contracts, deeds, stocks and bonds
Copy of passports, social security cards, immunization records
Record of credit card account numbers and companies
Family records (birth, marriage, death certificates)
Record of bank account numbers
Inventory of valuable household goods
Important telephone numbers
Games and books
Printable Shopping List for Supply Kit Items
How To Prepare In Advance For Severe Weather That May Cause An Extended Power Outage
- Call your local emergency management office if you or anyone you know has special needs in case of evacuation. Look under "county government" in your phone directory, or call directory assistance.
- Stock up on non-perishable food, medicine, baby supplies and pet food.
- Purchase bottled water. The American Red Cross recommends one gallon of water per person per day.
- Check emergency equipment (flashlights, battery-operated radios, emergency generators, etc.) and buy extra batteries.
- For high winds or hurricanes have on hand alternate coverings such as plywood.
- Trim trees that are not near power lines and clear debris. Once a hurricane warning is announced, trash pickup is suspended.
- Monitor radio, TV or NOAA Weather Radio for official weather bulletins.
- Keep extra cash on hand since an extended outage may prevent withdrawals from automatic teller machines or banks.
- Contact vet or kennel to arrange for safe sheltering for your pet if you must evacuate. Public shelters do not accept pets.
- Fill your vehicle's gas tank.
- Bring loose, lightweight objects such as lawn furniture inside.
- Designate a friend or relative outside your town or area as your family contact in the event your family is separated or has to evacuate. Agree upon a place where family members can meet if separated.
- Evacuate your pet as well. Make sure you have pet supplies, and that they are wearing collars with securely fastened identification tags. If you go to a shelter, have a safe place to take your pet, like the Vet. Most shelters cannot accept pets.
Helping Children During Severe Weather
The threat of bad weather may bring back memories of past incidences. Although each child's reaction to severe weather is unique, there are some common ways children respond to stress. Most children have a negative reaction to the threat of severe weather. This reaction will gradually disappear with your help. The following is some advice on helping your children during severe weather seasons:
- Remember that children need to talk about their anxieties. This process of talking will help them work out their feelings.
- Give children clear information on what is happening and what could happen (within reason and considering their age). Knowing that you understand the situation will ease their feelings.
- Involve your children in the family's severe weather preparations. Also, allow your child to have his or her own flashlight in order to give him or her a sense of control.
- Take your children's feelings seriously and reassure them often. Be patient with them.
- Younger children need to work out their fears while playing. Try to help them through this process with comments like, "That tower made a lot of noise when it fell down, didn't it?" or "That baby is sad, isn't she?"
- Gently tell your children that sometimes life can be hard, but reassure them that the family is safe and together.
- If the children are afraid of separating from their family and of going to school or child care, give them something that will comfort them such as a toy or picture.
- Try to keep children as close to their daily routine as possible. A routine gives children security and a sense of normalcy.
- Children sometimes tend to think that it is their fault if something goes wrong. Be sure they understand they are not at fault.
- Tell children bedtime stories with happy, safe endings.
- Repeat all these tips over and over again. It takes time and patience to make children feel secure.
Flint Energies is always concerned about your safety and well being, but perhaps more so during severe weather. Here are some important electrical-related tips to help you and your family prepare for an approaching storm:
- If someone in your home is dependent on electric-powered, life sustaining medical equipment, review your "family" emergency plan for back-up power or make arrangements to relocate.
- Before lowering a TV antenna or satellite disk, make sure to turn off and unplug the TV, and avoid power lines.
- Turn off all swimming pool pumps and filters, and wrap them in waterproof materials.
- Turn your refrigerator and freezer to their coldest settings ahead of time to keep food fresh if you experience a power outage.
- Turn off and unplug any unnecessary electrical equipment, including sensitive electronics. These tips do not cover everything. Learn all you can about storm preparedness and post-storm safety, so you can survive any storm safely and minimize damage.