It’s the funniest thing when the power goes out. At first, a slight panic. Did a breaker pop? Do the neighbors still have power? Wow, it’s dark and and quiet! Then comes the mad scramble for that one illusive flashlight that hasn’t been used in years. Finally! The flashlight has been found. Wait, this thing is out of batteries!
By the time the average person gets around to finding the batteries the power has come back on. Instead of prepping for future power outage occurrences what does the average person do? Absolutely nothing of course. Not a good game plan.
In this post let’s cover some basic prepping you can do to make life during a power outage much easier on yourself.
First off, check with PG&E to discover the extent of the outage. You can setup alerts to notify immediately of power outages in your area. This will at least give you peace of mind knowing the problem is being worked through, and you’re not the only one effected by the outage.
Second, secure the minimum gear to temporarily continue first world standards of living.
Here is a basic list of gear:
- Lighters and matches
- Touch activated LED lights for cabinets and hallways
- Propane cooking stove
- Cooking pots
- Bottled water
- Emergency radio (check out Kaito radios)
- First aid kit (check out the IFAK)
Now, this is ultra bare bones yet more than most people have during a power outage. With the above supplies you have everything you need to light up the house, cook, stay hydrated, and collect updates on the extent of the outage through the radio. If you want to get ultra fancy you can look into generators so you can continue to run your fridge and some of your lights.
Using the propane stove you can begin to cook the food that’s in your fridge. No power obviously means a lot of the food in your fridge and freezer will start to go bad after some time. Cook the stuff that will spoil the quickest. For quick meals you can make fast, look into picking up a bucket of Mountain House meals. These are meals backpackers take out into the wild. All you need is hot water and you have yourself a surprisingly tasty meal. Non-perishable snacks like Clif bars are also power outage past times.
Power outages don’t have to be boring either. Keeping a couple old school board games around is a fun way to bond with the family when the power goes out. Monopoly squeezes out enough action to see even the most hardened technology addict through third world times.
One of the greatest tips I can give you is avoid candles. When most people think about power outages they think of lighting a bunch of candles. This creates a nice little ambiance but also opens you up to a serious house fire. If you do opt for candles, make sure the flame is properly enclosed. The WORST candles you can use are those long candle sticks with an open flame.
Getting through power outages is not rocket science. You do not need to be a hardened survivalist to make it through. With some basic gear and common sense, you can easily see yourself through even long lasting outages with relative ease.