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What Should You Do During a Winter Power Outage?

When the winter decides to set in in Texas, it really sets in. At least, that’s what we have collectively learned over the last few years. It’s no surprise by now that the power grid in Texas has struggled to keep up with some harsh winters, and hundreds of thousands of residents have dealt with serious power outages.

But what should you do during a winter power outage? The answer to that question is multifaceted and begins with preparation for any winter power outage well ahead of time. If you suffer injuries due to someone else’s negligence, speak to a Houston personal injury lawyer to determine whether you have a case.

Start Preparing Now

Information from the UT Energy Institute explains that the February 2021 Texas winter storm led to massive power failures across the state of Texas, resulting in a loss of power for more than 4.5 million homes. This was a disaster, of that there is no doubt. The state was wholeheartedly unprepared and there are serious doubts about our state’s power grid and its ability to handle future massive winter storms.

We bring this up to say that there is no predicting what the weather will bring, so it is better to start preparing now. Do not assume that your power will stay on, even if you didn’t lose power during previous storms. Anybody can experience a power outage.

As you are making your preparations, we want you to consider doing the following:

  • Weatherizing your home
  • Stock up your pantry with some non-perishable foods
  • Stock up on working flashlights and batteries
  • Fill up some extra tanks of gas
  • Purchase a generator if you think it would be beneficial
  • Purchase a power bank or car charger
  • Keep an old-fashioned radio powered by batteries

If a Storm is Imminent

In the event a winter weather storm is imminent, you should also take necessary steps to protect your pipes. If you leave your water running at a very low drip, this should be enough to ensure the water will not freeze in the pipes. Additionally, go ahead and fill your bathtubs with water because winter weather can burst the pipes and lead to you not having running water for some period of time.

How to Stay Warm During a Winter Storm Power Outage in Texas

If the power does go out, do not panic. You have planned for this, and you know what to do.

  1. Dress in layers. Dress in layers, with the bottom layer looking something like you would wear during the summer, but gradually layering upward until you have on the heaviest jacket you own. You may not need all of your layers at once, but if the temperature continues to drop indoors, you will be glad you have them ready to go.
  2. Minimize opening exterior doors. It goes without saying that you should minimize how often you open any exterior window or door. Do not let out your valuable heat, and do not let in the frigid temperatures.
  3. Make use of a wood-burning fireplace. If you have a wood-burning fireplace, make sure you are properly prepared to light the fire. If you have not had your fireplace professionally cleaned recently, lighting a fire could prove to be more dangerous than helpful.

Do not run a generator indoors. Your generator needs to be outside and far enough away from your home so that you do not have any risk of inhaling fumes or carbon monoxide. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for your particular generator.

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