Keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed as much as possible. First, use perishable food from the refrigerator. An unopened refrigerator will keep foods cold for about 4 hours. Then use food from the freezer. A full freezer will keep the temperature for about 48 hours (24 hours if it is half full) if the door remains closed. Use your non-perishable foods and staples after using food from the refrigerator and freezer. If it looks like the power outage will continue beyond a day, prepare a cooler with ice for your freezer items. Keep food in a dry, cool spot and keep it covered at all times.
Turn off and unplug all unnecessary electrical equipment, including sensitive electronics. Turn off or disconnect any appliances (like stoves), equipment, or electronics you were using when the power went out. When power comes back on, surges or spikes can damage equipment. Leave one light turned on so you’ll know when the power comes back on. Eliminate unnecessary travel, especially by car. Traffic lights will be out and roads will be congested.
Back up your computer regularly and use high-quality surge suppressors. If you have critical information, consider an uninterruptible power supply for desktop computers. If you have a laptop, buy an extra battery or a power inverter that will allow you to run the laptop from a cigarette lighter plug.
If you connect a generator to your home's wiring system, Georgia law requires you to have a properly installed transfer switch. A transfer switch isolates the generator from our lines and eliminates feedback to the electric system. Feedback can electrocute anyone coming in contact with wires your generator has energized. If you don't have a transfer switch installed, plug appliances directly into the generator using a properly sized extension cord. Also, make sure you have a supply of generator fuel and store it in approved containers.
When using a portable generator, connect the equipment you want to power directly to the outlets on the generator. Do not connect a portable generator to a home’s electrical system. If you are considering getting a generator, get advice from a professional, such as an electrician. Make sure that the generator you purchase is rated for the power that you think you will need. *Note: If someone in your home is dependent on electric-powered, life-sustaining equipment, remember to include backup power in your evacuation plan. Always keep a cordless phone in your home. If necessary, be ready to spend the night in a hotel or other location that provides generated power. Southern Rivers Energy cannot guarantee that the power in your home will be restored immediately following an outage, so please be prepared.
Secure flashlights, battery-powered lanterns, and extra batteries. Avoid light sources that require a flame or fire.
If you depend on a well, you'll need to fill bathtubs or other large containers for household use, like flushing toilets. Fill clean pitchers or jugs for drinking water. If you have livestock or poultry, secure a standby generator to run the well.
Nonperishable foods that don't need cooking are ideal, like canned fruit, powdered milk, peanut butter, bread, and crackers. Don't forget a manual can opener! If there's room, fill plastic containers (e.g., rinsed-out milk jugs) with water beforehand and put them inside your refrigerator and freezer. The jugs provide cooling and also take the space of air which warms quickly.
Have blankets, sleeping bags, and extra clothes on hand, including hats. If you have a fireplace, make sure there's kindling and a good supply of wood. Be extremely careful when using alternate heating sources. Some are not approved for indoor use and could be a fire or carbon monoxide hazard. Make sure your fire extinguisher is charged and working. Sanitation - Keep moist towelettes and garbage bags in stock for personal sanitation needs.
Restoration time frames depend upon damage to Southern Rivers Energy’s facilities and the numbers of members served by those facilities. There is a systematic approach to restoring power. Some members may have power restored sooner than others, depending on the reason for the outage. Rest assured our lineman will be working as quickly as possible to restore power to the largest number of people in the shortest amount of time.