We all know how winter in Ontario can be; beautiful snow days can quickly be derailed by a wretched storm in just a few hours. However, these storms sometimes come with more than just ruined tobogganing plans. Power outages are unfortunately common during the cold months of Ontario, and it’s always crucial to be prepared for them! Below, we have a list of eight things to have handy with you in the event of a power outage.
1. Extra flashlights
This may be one of the most straightforward on our list, but one of the most important! A heavy-duty flashlight or headlamp is crucial when it comes to maneuvering through a power outage safely. This is especially true during the evenings when light is minimal. For your flashlight, you will want to make sure yours is battery-operated or wind-up. Ensure it does not require any charging so that it is prepared whenever the time may come! Flashlights are also a much safer and more reliable alternative to candles.
2. Water and non-perishable food
Unfortunately, some power outages take hours, or even days, to be fixed. Sometimes, you may not have tap water in these scenarios. When this is the case, you are going to want to have some bottles of water and non-perishable food items on hand. Some notable examples of food items that will come in handy include canned goods, energy bars and dried foods, such as nuts or fruit. Remember to replace your food and water supply kits once a year and include a manual can opener in your food kit!
3. First Aid Kit
In the event of any emergency, it is always crucial to have a First Aid Kit handy. With a lack of light, maneuvering around a certain area can be tough. It is always super important to have your emergency kit handy to treat any injuries promptly! Remember to always keep this in a safe space that is easy to find in the dark.
4. Portable radio
When it comes to staying updated on the status of your power, having a charged cellphone isn’t always an option when you are without power. It is easy to check in and even contact your hydro provider to see just how long you are going to be left in the dark. However, for the times when you are unable to charge your cellphone, it is always super important to have a portable radio with you. This will help you stay in the loop when your power will return or if an emergency arises. The option to listen to music is an excellent way to pass the time, especially with the kiddos!
5. Cards and board games
Whether you are with family, coworkers or roommates, a power outage is an excellent way to bond and connect with one another! Cards and board games are excellent ways of passing the time and stepping away from your cellphones and other daily distractions.
6. Blankets and warm clothing
When a power outage strikes during the colder months, it is always good to prepare with items that can keep you warm. This is especially important in cases where the outage lasts longer than you expect. Blankets, sleeping bags, hats and sweaters do an excellent job of providing warmth when there is no power. If your location is particularly colder than average, it may also be a clever idea to have gloves, socks and scarves at the ready. Additionally, having your winter jacket on standby is not a bad idea, either.
7. Portable phone charger
Receiving updates on when your power is going to return is always super handy, and your smartphone is a fantastic way of doing that. With applications, such as Twitter, being able to provide you with real-time updates on your area’s power situation, it’s easy to stay up-to-date. However, it can be hard to preserve the battery on your phone, especially if you are also using it for entertainment purposes. Therefore, it is extremely handy to have a portable phone charger or ‘power bank’ on hand. This way, you can give your smartphone more battery life without having to use electricity. Just remember to charge it and keep it in an accessible area beforehand!
8. Hygienic items
When you are without power, one thing you want to focus on is making sure your water supply is being conserved! A terrific way to cut back on your water supply is by being stocked up on hygienic items, such as hand sanitizers and baby wipes. These are both excellent ways to practice proper hygiene without using the water you have saved up. This way, you can keep the water you have on hand for drinking.
With these items, you will be able to get through a power outage of any length, safely and soundly. It is best to have all these items packaged together in a suitcase or bag, ready to go. Keep them in an area where you will be able to access them quickly in the dark, such as a front hall closet or in a kitchen pantry. Combine our list with the proper home insurance coverage, which will cover you financially if a storm causes damage to your home or belongings. Relax knowing you are safe and sound until your power returns!