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Lesson #3: Alternatives

Based on stories/lessons learned from your colleagues and co-workers.

What Happened: Lots of different secondary emergencies resulted from the "October storm." Without power, people couldn't use their phones, couldn't get any news without radios, tvs, computers. Some (shall remain un-named) went through techwithdrawal !!! It was discovered that without electric, some people didn't know how to open their garage door, or a can of food! Think through your typical day, and realize all the many aspects of life for which you need to develop alternate ways to do things.

Lesson Learned

When power goes out, you need to develop other plans!!
Several employees have mentioned crank flashlights and crank radios, camp lanterns, etc. that are an alternative to battery-driven power.
Garage doors that use openers have an override switch/pull that allows them to be opened manually.
People with elevator type lifts, etc. at their homes couldn't use them, restricting them to one floor, or to staying indoors.
Know how to light your gas stove/oven/pilot if it goes out - with electrical ignition systems, many people no longer know how to light their stovetop.
If your electric can opener doesn't work, you SHOULD HAVE a manual one! If you can't find it - if need be, a screwdriver, nails, and hammer will do the trick!
You can make toast over a flame! - no toaster needed.

Some cell phones have adapters that charge them when plugged in your car. Also, wireless phones don't work if there's no electric - but old-fashioned phones still do (provided the phone lines are still intact).

Water: Pipes can freeze and you're left without water, or water mains burst and you need to sterilize water.
Bottled water usually stays good for many years - it may taste stale, but you'll survive. Stock up: 1 gallon per person per day.
Consider using "sitting" water such as from a swimming pool to flush your toilet when needed. Just dumping water into it will flush it.
Sometimes, when water pressure drops, the water that is already in your hot water tank, can be sucked back out - turn off the main valve to maintain that level. Can melt snow for water, but boil for at least ten minutes! And allow to cool before drinking!

If basement is flooding, the sump pump is your new best friend! There are water-driven sump pumps which are safe to use in a flooded situation.
If loss of electric is the only problem, a power inverter (which converts batteries to alternating current) can power a sump pump, etc. They come in different wattage capacities, and here is some information:

Staying warm: Hats really do keep your body heat in! You might look strange, but it's worth it.

This message brought to you by the Emergency Planning Committee to help you prepare

03/14/2022 - 8:58 am