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Prolonged Power Outage Tips

Among the many threats that accompany severe weather events, there is the possibility of a prolonged electricity outage. If you are not sure what to do when the power is out, you may find yourself without the supplies needed to get through the outage. To make sure you are prepared, consider these power outage tips and tricks, and plan ahead while the weather conditions are clear.

Power Outage Emergency Kit Checklist

  • Keep a few flashlights in an accessible place and make sure they work. Flashlights are preferable to candles, which can be a fire hazard.
  • Get a radio that uses alternative energy sources such as battery power, solar, or a handcrank generator.
  • Stock plenty of batteries for all battery-operated devices you plan to use during a power outage.
  • Gather bottled drinking water and non-perishable, ready-to-eat food to last at least a few days.
  • Make sure anyone you live with understands the plan and knows where to find emergency items.
  • What to Do When Power is Out

    • Turn off any electrical equipment that was in use at the time of the power failure. Leave one light switched on so that you'll know when power is restored.
    • Contact your electricity distributor to inform them of the outage. Save the proper number in your cell phone ahead of time.
    • Listen to the local radio for updated information on weather conditions and power restoration.
    • If the electricity outage is prolonged, make use of the daylight hours to restock supplies including batteries, water, and food.

    During winter, temperatures in your house can rapidly drop if you lose electricity. Even though most furnaces are gas-fired, electricity is required to circulate the heat. To prepare, you should consider buying a battery-powered space heater and battery-operated heated blanket to ensure you can stay warm if the power goes out. If it's safe to leave the house, check if you can stay at a friend's home or a hotel until the electricity is back on in your home.

    What to Do When There is a Gas Outage

    A gas outage is a different problem from an electricity outage. Generally speaking, a gas outage will involve some type of pipeline issue that affects a large number of homes and businesses. The worst potential consequence for you is that you may lose your heating source if the gas outage occurs in the winter. Much like the power outage emergency checklist, there are things you can do to keep your home as warm as possible during a gas outage:

    • Roll up towels or blankets and place them at the bottom of your doors that face the outside. Consider hanging another blanket over these doors and keep them closed.
    • Cover your windows so heat can't escape.
    • Spend as much time with your family in one space, as your bodies will generate heat.
    • If you have a tent, put it up for an extra layer of heat protection.
    • If you have a fireplace light a fire. If you're not using your fireplace, make sure that the flue is closed
    • If you were using a gas-powered appliance when the gas outage began, turn off the burner valves so that gas doesn't invade the room when service is restored.

    Dealing with a Power Outage

    Above all else, whether it's an electricity or gas outage, you need to remain calm. Some outages may be planned for things like system maintenance, as per the Alberta Electric System Operator (AESO). If you have the supplies and a plan in place that everyone can follow there is no reason to panic. Most likely, your gas and/or electricity will be restored soon.

    Wherever you are in the province, having the necessary resources for when a gas or power outage happens is essential. Taking precautionary steps ahead of time is quick and easy and makes a big difference when unexpected gas or power outages happen.

    We know the importance of having access to working gas and power and are here for your energy-related needs. If you have questions about the services we provide, feel free to contact us at 866-420-3174 or reach out online. We're happy to help you with whatever information we can provide.

    The information presented on this page is for informational purposes only and is by no means exhaustive. For further details on what to do in a power outage, please visit Canada.ca.