By Tim Zatzariny Jr.
Oh great, the power just went out—now what?
During the winter season (which can mean downed power lines and utility poles), the power could go out at any time. Make sure your loved ones and property are protected with these tips.
- Check your circuit breaker box to be sure the problem isn’t just with your home. If not, report the outage to your local power company:
- PECO at 1-800-841-4141. You can also follow outage reports through PECO's Twitter page.
- PPL Electric at 1-800-DIAL-PPL (342-5775). You can also follow outage reports through PPL's Twitter page.
- Met-Ed at 1-888-LIGHTSS (544-4877.) You can also follow outage reports through Met-Ed's Twitter page.
- Turn on one light switch so you’ll know when power is restored, but unplug all electrical equipment, including TVs and computers, and motor-driven appliances to prevent an overload when the power turns back on.
- Never go near fallen power lines. Report the outage and call 911 to report the downed lines.
- Keep a flashlight and charged batteries on hand and in an easily accessible location. Better yet, stock each bedroom with at least one flashlight.
- Keep your freezer and refrigerator doors closed to preserve the cool air. Food can last several hours in a power outage if it’s kept cool. Put a blanket over your refrigerator to add insulation to it. After the power is back on, if you’re in doubt, throw it out. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has handy tips about how long food will last in outages.
- Charge your phones, laptops and other devices if you know bad weather is coming, just in case an outage hits.
We suggest printing out this list so you can access it during an outage and programming your local power company's outage line into your phones.