Living through a long power outage is a rare ordeal that really tests how well a
person has prepared for such an event. With so many things to consider like power
outage duration, time of day, what season, outside temperatures expected, and how
many people in your group to take care of. It doesn't take too long to figure out
that not being prepared properly will end up being a losing battle against time.
Most people have a life that takes into consideration an arrangement of normal everyday
activities such as eating, sleeping, keeping warm or cool. During a power outage
most home appliances will simply not work at all and that could cause some major
concerns if the power outage lasts too long. Time is the most crucial ingredient
in your planning and any type of miscalculation on the amount or type of resources
needed to endure a long power outage could have possible dire consequences.
Our reliance on utility companies to supply us with energy has created an almost
total dependency for a supply chain that almost never breaks, but when it does are
For outages that last for minutes, things like extra batteries for flashlights,
or candles could be needed, and for most people that kind of outage would only be
considered an inconvenience.
Outages that last for hours begin to test our planning skills, depending on the
season heat or cooling in your home could suddenly disappear with your comfortable
inside environment slowly changing to match the current outdoor environment. Your
fridge or deep freeze would now begin to loose that cooling ability to keep your
food safe. Simple things like trying to keep warm, or cool, a warm meal, a hot cup
of coffee, or cool drinks in the heat could now become a problem depending on how long
the power is off. If any these issues were considered and an alternate means to
providing those basic needs was planned for, then now will be the time when you
can actually put your planning to the test to see how well you measure up.
The real test begins for outages that last for days because this is when your home
environment will most likely match outdoor temperatures if alternate heating or
cooling means was not provided. Food in fridges will be warm, food in freezers will
be thawing, soon a time will be reached when food not eaten will be spoiled, the
only way to plan for this would be to provide a back-up power option. Cooking a
warm meal is another issue that could be easily taken care of in warmer temperatures,
but could be more difficult to achieve in extremely cold temperatures with an outside
gas BBQ. This is also the time when you begin to really consider all the planning
options that you may have done, and really wish that you should have made allowances
in your plan to prepare for a really long power outage.
The funny thing in all this comes while your thinking about all the things you should
have put into that power outage plan, and suddenly hear, and see indications that
power has been restored. That feeling of despair instantly gets replaced with a
smile on your face, and thoughts about a power outage plan get put into storage
until the next time it happens.