Everett, WA – Snohomish County Public Utility District reminds customers about several things they can do this fall to be better prepared in case Mother Nature strikes in the coming months.
Create an Emergency Kit A simple emergency kit can help you get through outages. A kit should contain items such as:
• Flashlight • Batteries • Matches • Bottled water • Food bars, canned food • Blankets • Manual can opener • Battery-powered radio • Battery-powered clock • First aid pack – band aids, antibiotic ointment, gauze
Plan Ahead for Special Medical Needs It’s critical that customers using special medical equipment at home, such as respirators, consider purchasing a backup generator and/or have other contingency plans in place. They should set up plans with friends or relatives to get to a site with electricity and/or identify emergency centers at local social service agencies and churches. While the PUD strives to provide continuous electric service to customers, it cannot guarantee that occasional power outages or failures won’t occur. During the winter months the likelihood of power outages increases due to seasonal storms.
Stay Informed Listen to local radio newscasts for the latest information about the PUD’s storm response efforts. The utility regularly provides updates to KIRO-FM (97.3), KOMO-AM (1000) and KRKO-AM (1380). Utility staff also provides updates to local television stations and newspapers. Customers can also check www.snopud.com for outage updates and other important information during major storms.
Who to Call Following big storms, the PUD knows many people are without electricity. If you have specific information about a tree in a power line or a power line on the ground, please call the PUD at 425/783-1000 (toll-free at 1-877-783-1000). If it’s a life-threatening situation or medical emergency, call 911.
– More – Stay Warm If your power goes out, choose a small room with few windows as your primary living area. Keep your window drapes closed as much as possible. Also dress warmly. Wear several layers of clothes and, if needed, gloves, hat and a scarf.
Turn Switches Off Try to remember what was turned on at the time the power went out and turn the switches to those items to the off position. It’s especially important to turn off anything that has a heating element, such as the electric range, an iron, or a toaster oven. Turning items off will prevent a fire when the power is restored and also help the PUD restore power faster. It’s not necessary to turn off hot water heaters.
Protect Food Keep your refrigerator and freezer doors closed as much as possible. The contents should be good for at least 24 hours if the door is kept closed. After that, dry ice helps protect food.
PUD Preparations The utility has continued to proactively trim trees throughout the region – and tackle challenging areas such as Camano Island. The PUD trims more than 500 circuit miles of trees annually. In addition, upgrades to its phone system allow it to handle up to 10,000 calls per hour so that customers can report outage locations and receive updates.
Other Storm Tips: • Know what emergency plans are in place at your child’s school or daycare center. • If you have an electric garage door opener, locate and know how to use the manual override. • Conduct a home safety evaluation, including the garage door and nearby trees/branches that could be a problem. • During windstorms, if you’re indoors, move away from windows or other objects that could break or fall and move to lower floors in multi-story homes. • If you are outdoors, move into a building and avoid downed electric power lines, poles and trees. • If you are driving, pull off the road and stop away from trees. If possible, walk into a safe building. Avoid overpasses, power lines and other hazards.