Before the storm: outage preparation

With some planning, you can remain safe and minimize your inconvenience during an outage.

Be prepared

Charge your cell phone and other portable electronic devices.

Keep an emergency supply kit stocked with flashlights, a battery-operated radio and plenty of fresh batteries for both. Don't use candles or oil lamps during an outage, which can present fire hazards.

Check weather forecasts before traveling. Be mindful of inclement weather that could cause power outages, especially during summer monsoon storms.

Have a back-up power source available for anyone in your home who relies on life support or other medical equipment that requires electricity to function.

Protect your electronics

Turn off your air conditioning unit. Power surges from lightning can overload units, leading to costly repair bills.

Unplug electronic equipment and appliances before the storm arrives.

Protect sensitive electrical equipment by installing power protection devices, which are available at hardware or electronics stores.

Tips for severe conditions

Severe storms or other natural disasters can results in an extended interruption to day-to-day life. It's important to be prepared for those rare instances, especially if you live in a rural area. Keep enough supplies in your home to meet your needs for at least three days.

Assemble a disaster supplies kit with items you may need in an evacuation. Store these supplies in sturdy, easy-to-carry containers such as backpacks, duffel bags or covered trash containers. Recommended Items include:

  • A three-day supply of water (one gallon per person per day) and food that won't spoil.
  • One change of clothing and footwear per person, and one blanket or sleeping bag per person.
  • A first-aid kit that includes your family's prescription medications.
  • Emergency tools including a battery-powered radio, flashlight and plenty of extra batteries.
  • An extra set of car keys and a credit card, cash or traveler's checks.
  • Sanitation supplies.
  • Special items for infant, elderly or disabled family members.
  • An extra pair of glasses.
  • Keep important family documents in a waterproof container.
  • Keep a smaller kit in the trunk of your car.