Tips to keep you prepared in the event of a power outage

BECKLEY, WV (WOAY) – With another winter storm on the way power outages are a cause for concern. However there are some things you can do to be more prepared in case you lose power. One of the most important things to do is have an emergency kit ready with needed supplies.

“Well it’s always a good idea to keep an emergency kit at home and in your vehicle as well,” said Lieutenant Chris Lanna of the Beckley Fire Department. “For example if your stalled out on the road way you want to make sure you have some snacks, a blanket is a really good item to have, a flashlight, and a battery powered radio so you can have some communication if need be.”

In addition to these items it is also recommended that you have extra medications, batteries, water, a first aid kit, and a fire extinguisher.

When it comes to staying warm having a fireplace, wood stove, or space heater is always a good idea along with enough fuel to keep them going. However, it is important to be careful with space heaters as they can become fire hazards.

“Electrical ones you want to make sure they have proper clearances all the way around the heater and follow the manufacture’s instructions for when you do use them,” Lt. Lanna said. “If the power is out you are not going to be able to use those so gas fired or propane type heaters also make sure you are certainly following the instructions for the proper use of those. If those heaters are needing to be refueled, always want to make sure to cool them down and take them to an outside area before you refuel them to prevent the possibility of a flash fire.”

Lt. Lanna also recommends hard woods for fire places to prevent creosote build up in the chimney. It’s also a good idea to check your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors to ensure they are working. These systems due come with a battery back up that will keep them working even if the power goes out.

For more winter safety information visit weather.gov/safety/winter