21 Dec Winter Home Preparation, Part 2: Long-Term Power Outages
In the winter of 2020, winter storms left over 90,000 people without power, some for several days. A prolonged power outage may cause disruptions in communication systems, water, and transportation. These service interruptions could impact your cooking facilities, essential medical devices, and the security and environmental systems within your home.
Whether you’re at home during a power outage or away on vacation, these simple steps will keep you safe and give you peace of mind in the event of a long-term power outage.
Assess your medical needs
If you rely on medical devices that use electricity, a prolonged power outage could affect your health. Work with your doctor to create an emergency plan in case you lose power. Are there battery-powered devices you could use instead? Can your medication be stored safely if your refrigerator loses power? Do you use a medical alert system?
Stock up on essentials for a long-term power outage
Restock your emergency kit before storm season begins. This kit should include a few gallons of drinking water, batteries to power electronic equipment and phones, and at least three days’ worth of non-perishable food—stock up on first aid items and any prescription medications you take as well. Store your kit somewhere easy to access, such as your pantry or entry closet.
Consider a generator
In freezing winter temperatures, going a day or so without electricity for heating may be impossible for you and your family. Consider investing in a generator. Speak with an expert about your needs and have them design a solution that suits your home.
Remember, never use your generator indoors as they emit toxic exhaust containing carbon monoxide. Use your generator outside, far from windows and doors. Before running the generator, have CO detectors installed throughout your home to alert you of any dangerous fumes.
Understanding your residential security systems during a power outage
You may be wondering how your home security systems will function if power and communication systems are down. American Alarm home security systems have battery backups, enabling them to maintain a connection even during a power failure. The battery backups may last anywhere from 12 to 24 hours, depending on the complexity of your systems.
American Alarm’s backup communications channels ensure your signal will always go through if the system is triggered. We use internet, radio, phone line, and cellular communications to ensure alerts reach our Security Command Center without delay.
Cellular communications function even during blackouts. Whether you’re home or out of town, you can rest assured that with backup communications enabled, your burglar alarm and environmental systems will function normally and alert you in real time using push notifications.