What can you do if the planned power outages turn the lights off in your state
If planned power outage sounds like an irrelevant phrase, think of this: you get up and find out that your phone’s battery is dead and can’t be charged, schools are closed so kids need to stay at home, and you can’t check your work emails from your laptop since internet is not working without electricity.
Beyond these simple activities, planned power outages put the more critical elements of our lives including healthcare facilities and airports at risk; if these facilities don’t have emergency back-up power.
What are planned power outages?
Planned power outages are deliberate decisions made by electric utility companies to cut the power supply to residents and businesses. Most electric utility companies periodically announce planned power outages to conduct maintenance within the electricity infrastructure. These short outages could impact small groups of customers and are nothing more than a simple inconvenience for most of us.
On the other hand, for over two and a half million Californians that are at risk of losing power for hours to days, planned power outages are not simple inconveniences anymore.
Recent planned power outages in California are not for maintenance purposes, instead they aim to reduce wildfires and associated risk to lives and property. This method got increased traction after the Camp Fire destroyed the town of Paradise, California, and killed 85 people in November 2018. The Camp Fire and several other wildfires are considered to be caused by trees hitting the power lines or by faulty transmission lines.
Could your state experience extended planned power outages?
Yes, if you live in a state with a high risk of wildfires. The wildfires can threaten lives and property, making residents more prone to experiencing extended planned power outages. Within the U.S., residents of western and southern states face a higher risk of experiencing these extended planned power outages due to higher occurrences of wildfires in these states.
Preparedness is key to protecting your family during a planned power outage
Here are the preparation tips if you live in an area that could be impacted by planned power outages for an extended period.
- Sign up for updates via phone, text, email and/or social media to be aware of latest developments.
- Take an inventory of household items that rely on electricity.
- Plan for any medical needs – like power-dependent medical devices or medications that need to be refrigerated.
- For peace of mind and no power interruption, consider purchasing a whole house generator. A whole house generator like the Cummins QuietConnect will automatically restore your power the moment it goes off.
If you are interested in a more detailed list, check out What to Do Before, During and After a Power Outage. For more preparedness tips and to get valuable resources, consider signing up for the Cummins Home Generators newsletter.