The First Thing You Should Do After A Power Grid Failure
We’ve all been there, experiencing sudden power outages due to storms, equipment failures, or even sometimes without a clear reason. It can be quite disorienting at first, plunging us into sudden darkness or silence if it happens during an intense gaming session or binge-watching our favorite TV show. So, what should be the first thing you should do after a power grid failure? Let’s explore.
Stay Calm and Assess the Situation
When the power goes out without warning, your first instinct might be to panic. Don’t! It’s vitally important to remain calm and level-headed.
– Tip: Have a flashlight or headlamp always available for immediate light.
– Trick: Use your smartphone as a light source. Most smartphones now have built-in flashlights.
After you’ve lit up your surroundings, assess the situation. Have all the lights gone out or just a section of the house? Check whether other electrical devices have also lost power to understand the extent of the power outage better.
Check other Appliances and Lights
Rather than just checking your closest electric light or device, it’s wise to check several across different areas of your dwelling. This will help you understand whether it’s a whole house power outage or more local to a room or device.
Check Your Circuit Breaker
Before you start getting worried about a total power grid failure, you should first check whether the problem might be in your house. It could simply be a tripped circuit breaker or a blown fuse.
– Tip: Label your breakers for easy identification in case of emergencies.
Verify if it’s a Broad Power Outage
If the power outage does not seem to be localized to your home, then it might be a broader power loss affecting your neighborhood, town, or wider area. Check if the street lights are on or if your neighbors have power.
Inform Your Electric Company
If you’ve confirmed that it’s a broad power outage, you should inform your power company. Most utility companies have hotlines you can call. You can also report the outage online if your mobile data or internet is still functioning.
Turn Off and Unplug Electronics
In the event of a power grid failure, be sure to turn off and unplug all unnecessary appliances and electronics. Power surges when restarting can potentially damage sensitive electronics and even trigger home fires.
– Trick: Unplug all but one light source. When that light comes on, you’ll know power has been restored and you can slowly start turning on other appliances.
Use a Generator if Accessible
If you have a home generator, now is the time to use it. However, remember to follow all safety guidelines to avoid accidents.
My 2 Cents
Experiencing a power outage can be slightly disconcerting, but remember, panicking doesn’t help. Staying calm and following a systematic approach like the one we’ve outlined above can make the situation much more manageable.
On a related note, it’s always a great idea to be prepared for such emergencies. Always have a flashlight ready and remember to keep your phone charged in case you need it during a power outage. And above all, always have a plan in place and make sure everyone in your family knows about it.
Remember, “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail” – Benjamin Franklin. So, stay prepared, stay safe.