Don’t put away the snow blower and boots yet! After the unseasonably warm weather this week it is hard to believe we are in the path of a winter storm. Heavy snow and ice can lead to downed power lines, leaving co-op members without power. During a power outage, your local electric coop will continue to work as quickly and safely as possible to restore power, but there are a few things you can do to prepare yourself. Here are some winter safety tips to keep you and your family safe during the rest of our winter season.Never touch a fallen power line, and assume all wires on the ground are electrically charged. Call your electric co-op to report it immediately. Always have several days’ supply of food that does not need to be cooked, such as granola bars, jerky, and canned goods. Five gallons of water per person should be available in the event of an extended power outage. If your power goes out, an alternate heating source—such as a fireplace, propane space heater, or wood stove—may be used. Be cautious and never leave the heat source unattended! Do not use a gas-powered oven for heating. A gas oven may go out or burn inefficiently, leading to carbon monoxide poisoning. Make sure carbon monoxide detectors and smoke detectors are working properly.
Winter weather can be unpredictable and dangerous, and planning ahead can often be the difference between life and death. Please stay safe during our winter storms!