Friday, January 16, 2015

Pretend Your Power Goes Out...

Pretending that our power has gone out is not a stretch; recently this has happened twice for wind storms.  When normal frames of reference are gone and it's nighttime, it’s hard to move around without light.  That lamp that always stays on is out, the porch light and your neighbors lights are out.  That lack of sound from your refrigerator adds to the eerie feeling now to be replaced with scary howling wind.  The TV isn’t there to provide comfort, let alone if you’re watching the World Series, Seahawks or American Idol.  Eating cold Beany Weenies out of a can is not our idea of good dinner, but that’s for another blog post.   If you are on a well that is reliant on electricity or have medically fragile family members you are more vulnerable than others.  Power outage is simply very dark and unsettling.

What did you swear that you were going to do to prepare for the next event and haven’t gotten around to doing?  What’s stopping you?  Perhaps a little encouragement (wink, wink), a reminder of what it’s like to be dark and cold or perhaps its ideas on how to break it down.  Perhaps a reminder that your children, spouse, senior parent and pets depend on you to be prepared.  Like the song says “We Can Help” with encouragement and suggestions, but the truth is that no one is going to make it happen for you but you. 
Imagine how that uneasiness would settle down if you have a plan and you and your family members know where your immediate supplies are for power outages.  Or, if you need motivation, imagine the opposite.  Lets get started. 

Immediate Emergency Lighting. 
Flashlights should be available to grab when the power goes out, kept close by and always in the same place.  At home this might be plug in emergency flashlights/nightlights that illuminate when the power goes out.  You can pick up the previously plugged in, charged (and lightweight) flashlight to maneuver the dark hallways.  This should be enough to take you to your power outage supplies.  (You have these, right?)

Headlamps are favorite choices for hands free and inexpensive emergency lighting.  The one caveat is that they are battery dependent.  Keep the batteries fresh and have spares.  Secure your headlamp to your bed (think about earthquake shaking) and other important places just inside your home entry (might be the front door, could be the door from/to the garage).  Most of these types have built-in tilting heads – keep it tilted down out of others eyesight.    

STOP HERE – If you accept the challenge to improve your preparedness the first part of is up to you.  Start coming up with your own plan and evaluate where you stand on these issues.   We will continue this blog post the on February 6.  You have three weeks – GO!

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