What to include in a power outage emergency kit

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Winter weather can often cause power outages due to water freezing on the lines or strong winds, and Dayton Power & Light recommends you pack an outage emergency kit.

DP&L includes a number of general items in their recommended list. These are:

  • Food that doesn’t need to be cooked or refrigerated
  • Manual can opener
  • A gallon of water per person per day that the power may be out
  • A first-aid kit and store of personal medications
  • Blankets
  • A corded land-line phone, which may work even when the power is out
  • A list of important phone numbers
  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • Cash
  • Battery-powered candles
  • Car-plug phone charger
  • Battery- or crank-powered radio or TV

The Ohio Department of Public Safety also recommends a basic emergency supplies kit which includes many of the same items.

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The ODPS recommends keeping at least three days of water and non-perishable food, and adds moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation, a wrench or pliers to turn off the utilities and local maps.

Both DP&L and ODPS also recommend pet food and extra water for each pet if you have them, extra infant formula and diapers for any young children and a complete change of clothing and personal hygiene items if you have to leave your home.

DP&L also includes a home generator on its winter weather outage kit list, though ODPS warns not to use generators or propane heaters in an enclosed space due to a risk of carbon monoxide build-up, even if using a fan to circulate air.

Beyond these items, though, the ODPS said that a disaster supply kit should be personalized based on where you live and the unique needs of your family. It added that the kit should be stored in a portable container, and that families should consider putting together another kit to keep in each vehicle, at your place of employment and other places you spend time.

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