EXTRA PRECAUTIONS DURING THIS POTENTIALLY EXTRAORDINARY STORM
We’re watching the forecasts just like you are. Sure, we’re all used to the snow but when words like “historic blizzard” get thrown into the mix, a little extra preparation is in order.
Of course, only time will tell what the weather will do. But ensuring the Salter community’s safety is our number one concern during extreme weather. With that in mind, we wanted to share some tips for staying safe if you lose power.
Your shopping list
If you’re stopping at the store on the way home, pick up a manual can opener if you don’t already have one.
You may also want to buy some shelf-stable protein sources, such as canned meat or beans, and peanut butter. That way you’ll have more satisfying and nutritionally balanced food options if you’re unable to cook for a few days.
If the temperature drops
If the power goes out and temperatures drop below 50 degrees inside your house, you could be at risk for hypothermia.
What to do: Bundle up in blankets, hats and coats. Try to keep moving to ensure blood circulation. Drink warm fluids to maintain body temperature.
Obviously, do not attempt to warm your home with a grill, gas stove, or any other device that’s not intended to be a heater. You could end up ingesting poisonous and potentially deadly fumes.
Be smart about water
If your home has well water, keep in mind that a power outage may disrupt the system that purifies it. That means drinking the water or even using it to brush your teeth could put you at risk for ingesting dangerous bacteria, such as E. coli.
If you have a gas stove or an outdoor grill, boil water before using it to kill the bacteria. Allowing the water to reach a “rolling boil” for at least one minute is sufficient. (You can check out the Center for Disease Control’s Guide to Drinking Water for more information.) You can also use bottled water.
Tip: If you’re a renter, you may want to check with your landlord to find out about your water source.
Know how long refrigerated food is safe
If you lose power, your refrigerator should maintain its temperature for about four hours, provided the door is kept closed.
A very full freezer may stay cold for up to 48 hours. A half-full freezer will stay cold for 24 hours.
In any case, don’t take chances with spoiled food – throw it out if it looks questionable. Do not taste food to determine if it’s still good.
Check out this list from FoodSafety.gov for specific guidance on when certain items should be discarded.
We hope that all of our Salter friends and family are safe and warm throughout the storm!