News From The 112th Precinct Council
Being Prepared For A Power Outage
The NYC Office of Emergency Management sends e-mails to the CERT teams about power outages in the city.
Every day, there are minor power outages in some part of the city and then the power is restored. Are you prepared in your house or apartment if our area is affected? If we do lose power for a few hours or for days, the food in the refrigerator and freezer will spoil.
There are some things that you should be sure to have in your residence.
• Keep a flashlight with batteries readily accessible.
• Keep a radio that runs on batteries readily accessible.
• Do not light candles for light.
• If there has been a storm, stay away from downed power lines or any type of utility equipment. Please note the location of the downed line or poles and 911 immediately.
• Food will last much longer in your refrigerator and freezer if the door is not opened.
• If food in your freezer defrosts, do not allow it to freeze again.
• Be sure to have bottled water in your house.
• Have some canned food in the house and a manual can opener.
• purchase some freezer packs.
The NYC office of Emergency Management has the following advice if there is a power outage:
• First, check to see if a fuse is blown or a circuit breaker has been tripped.
• Call your power provider immediately to report the outage.
• Disconnect or turn off all appliances that will go on automatically when service is restored. If several appliances start up at once, they may overload electrical circuits.
• In order to prevent food spoilage, keep your refrigerator and freezer doors closed as much as possible. Move milk, cheese, meats, and other perishables into the freezer compartment. If the freezer is only partially full, keep all items close together and stacked on top of each other.
• Stay indoors if possible. If you must go outside, stay away from downed and dangling power lines.
• If power will be out for an extended amount of time, consider going to a shelter, hotel or friend or relative's home that has power. However, only do so when authorities say it is safe to travel (i.e. in the case of a storm).
• Check on people with special needs.
The NYC Office of Emergency Management also gives advice for storing food for emergencies:
• Buy foods that can be eaten with little or no cooking.
• Keep food in the driest and coolest spot in your home.
• Close food boxes and cans tightly after use.
• Wrap bread, cookies, or crackers in plastic bags or keep them in tightly closed containers.
• Use plastic containers when storing food and buy emergency food in cans.
• Keep clean plastic containers on hand to store one gallon of water for each person per day.
• Have a special section of the food cupboard set aside for emergency food, so that it is easier to manage, and can be packed quickly if there is a need to evacuate.
• Rotate food every six months.
• Develop an Emergency Food Preparation Kit that includes disposable plates, forks, spoons, and knives; disposable hot and cold cups; paper napkins or towels; a manual can opener; trash bags; a sterno heater, hibachi, or camp stove with five-day fuel supply; matches in a waterproof container; heavy-duty aluminum foil; other utensils (i.e. cutting knives); and plastic sandwich or freezer bags for food storage.
In other areas of the country the government has issued food advice regarding power outages. In California, San Diego has listed the following information regarding food and refrigeration: • Keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed. Keep potentially hazardous foods, such as meat or poultry, chilled to 41°F or less.
• Do not place hot or unrefrigerated foods in the refrigerator once the power has gone out. It will raise the temperature inside the unit. Chill food with ice baths as needed. Discard any foods that were prepared prior to the power outage that were not rapidly cooled.
• Keep meat and poultry items separated from other foods so that if they begin to thaw, their juices will not drip on to other foods.
• Discard any thawed foods that has risen to room temperature and remained there for two hours or more.
• Discard the following potentially hazardous foods if kept above refrigerator temperature (41°F) for more than two hours: raw or cooked meat, poultry or seafood; milk/cream, yogurt or soft cheese; cooked pasta or pasta salads; custard, chiffon or cheese pies; fresh eggs or egg substitutes; meat or cheese-topped pizza; luncheon meats; casseroles, stew, or soups; mayonnaise, tartar sauce, and creamy dressings; refrigerated cookie doughs; and creamfilled pastries.
We are in the midst of our fundraising drive for the year. All donations will be listed in the Night Out Against Crime program.
The Night Out Against Crime is August 5th at MacDonald Park from 6 to 9 p.m.
If you want to participate or need more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Editor's Note: Heidi Harrison Chain is president of the 112th Precinct Community Council.
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