It’s officially winter now and today marks the one year anniversary of the ice storm that hit southern Ontario, resulting in power outages for over 300,000 homes and business. In the next few days, warmer weather is expected and, along with that, rain—and quite a bit of it. We don’t know if there will be another ice storm this year, but we also don’t know what surprises are in store for us this winter. The question is, are you ready for a winter power outage?
Let’s make a list and check it twice:
- Flashlights and candles
- Extra batteries (the correct ones please)
- First aid kit
- Supplies for people with special needs
- Bottled water – fairly inexpensive to have several cases on reserve
- Battery or crank operated clock and radio
- Corded telephone
- Most only have cell phones, so consider a fully secondary power supply for your phone
- Non-perishable, ready-to-eat foods
- Warm clothing and extra blankets
- Power generator – make sure you read all the safety precautions of using one and have installed carbon monoxide detectors (by the way, this are now mandatory)
This is not an exhaustive list, but you can gather more information to help you better prepare. The Government of Canada has a publication on Winter Power Failures that can help. Having a plan is a good start, Emergency Management Ontario can help you get started.