WHAT DO I DO WHEN THE POWER GOES OUT?
At Austech Surveillance and IT, we know losing power can be stressful and sometimes even a little bit scary. This is why we have put together this blog to help get you through your power outage as safely and comfortable as possible without too much inconvenience to you. Throughout this blog you will see a step by step guide of what to do when your power goes out as well as a ‘what not to do’ list. We know power outages suck so we have also included for you, 10 things you can do to help pass the time and try and make your power outage even a little bit fun.
What to do When the Power Goes out:
- LOCATE A LIGHT SOURCE
During a power outage the first thing you should do is locate a light source. Even if the power outage is during the day, its hard to know when the power will be restored so its better to be prepared. Torches should be your go-to light source! Old fashioned light sources such as candles are okay to use but not recommended. Candles can cause fire risks if knocked over by children or pets and the holders they are in may get quite hot meaning you won’t be able to move around with them. We suggest electronic or battery-operated light sources as they are easily transportable and eliminate danger during a power outage. They are very inexpensive and you can get them at almost any store, so stock up so you are ready for your next power outage.
- LOCATE THE SOURCE OF THE PROBLEM
When the power in your house goes out do not assume everyone’s power is out! It is important to look outside your window or doors and check if your neighbors have power still. It is also important to go for a drive up and down your street to see if others have power or not. This is because not everyone’s house may be on the same grid, hence why during power outages you’ll see some people have power while others don’t. Remember it is crucial that you always pay attention to your surroundings to ensure you and your family’s safety.
If everyone else has power and you do not, then it’s possible the power outage is a result of a faulty appliance in your home or a blown fuse/tripped switch. Locate your circuit breaker to see if any of the switches have been tripped. If any of the switches are flicked to the ‘off’ position it means it has tripped and simply flicking it back to the ‘on’ position may restore your power. If this does not work, please call an electrician ASAP. There are plenty of 24 hour electricians who will be happy to help you – but please note, we are not one of them.
If everyone else’s power is also out, it is important to call your electricity provider, which in Western Australia is Western Power. When you call them, you may be directed to an automated message will inform you of the estimated time the power will be restored. The number to call for western power is 13 13 51.
- TURN OFF ALL APPLIANCES AND UNPLUG THEM AT THE OUTLET
During a power outage it is crucial that you turn off all appliances in your home and unplug them from the outlet. There are two reasons for this;
- By turning off all your appliances you will help eliminate damage to your appliances from a power surge when your power is restored.
- Turning off all your appliances and unplugging them from the outlet protects the consumer should there be residual current left in your electrical systems.
It is also important to ensure that any heaters and cooking appliances that use electricity are also switched off and clear of any debris that could be a fire hazard such as tea towels or napkins.
In saying this, it is a good idea to leave one light switch on so that you know when the power is restored. Alternatively, you can just keep an eye on your neighbour's house to see when the power is back on.
- Call an Electrician
If you are not comfortable checking your own circuit breaker or checking your appliances for faults, please call an electrician! There are a number of 24/7 electricians available but we are not one. before your electrician comes, please remember to turn off and unplug all appliances
What not to do When the Power Goes out:
- Do not assume the power is out for everyone:
When the power goes out it is crucial to look outside your windows and check if your neighbours as well as houses up and down your street have power. Sometimes the issue might just be inside your home and restoring your power may be as simple as flipping a switch.
- Do not let your mobile phone die:
During a power outage – especially if it is due to a natural disaster – it is important your mobile phone retains its charge to allow you to contact your family members to ensure their safety or to contact emergency services. Your mobile phone may also be used as a form of personal lighting which can be very handy.
- Do not keep the fridge/freezer door open:
Sometimes during a power outage, it is difficult to know when the power is going to be restored, so it is important to keep all fridge and freezer doors closed so that they maintain their temperature, keeping your food cold. By continuously opening and closing your fridge and freezer doors, it allows the cold air to escape and your food quality to deteriorate dramatically.
- Do not keep phoning the power company to see when the power will be back on:
During a power outage your power company will be receiving thousands of calls from people just like you wanting to know when the power will be restored. Although a power outage can be inconvenient and annoying, it cost nothing to be patient. The power company is working as fast as they can!
What can I do to Pass the Time?
We know how boring power outages can be – especially if they are for an extended period of time. That is why we have provided 10 easy things you can do while the power is out to help pass the time.
- Read that book that you have been meaning to read
- Paint or draw
- Play a game of cards
- Play a board game
- Take a nap
- Raid your refrigerator
- Place bets on when you think the power will come back on
- Play charades or hide and seek.
- Go see a movie at your local cinemas or go out to dinner
We hope you have found this information sheet useful. Remember to always check your surroundings and to call an electrician if you are uncomfortable dealing with your homes electricity to ensure you and your family’s safety.
As always, if you have any questions of queries please do not hesitate to contact out fully qualified electricians that will be more than happy to help you out.
The Austech Surveillance and IT Team