Last year, Washington had the fifth highest number of power outages in the United States

Alyse Messmer-Smith / The Bellingham Herald

Washington State had the 5th highest number of power outages in the United States in 2021 according to Stacker, a data analytics website, so it’s very important to be prepared for power outages in your own home. .

Power outages not only disrupt our own homes, but shut down retail businesses, ATMs, grocery stores, gas stations, and other services people rely on. According to, a website of the US Department of Homeland Security, power outages can also lead to water contamination and food spoilage, disrupt transportation and prevent the use of medical devices.

How to prepare for a power outage:

Homeland Security advises citizens to prepare for power outages by:

— Take inventory of items in your home that need electricity and have batteries or other power sources available to keep them charged.

— Discuss with your doctor any medical devices or medications that depend on power or refrigeration.

— Have non-perishable food and water stored in your home.

Puget Sound Energy reminds Washington State residents to prepare for a power outage by having a plan:

— Know how to manually open and close electric doors such as garage doors.

— Know how to properly shut off your natural gas if necessary.

— Create an emergency kit of items you might need in the event of a power outage or other emergency.

The Red Cross advises citizens to recognize how a power outage will affect their home’s cooling, heating, lighting, cooking equipment, food and medicine refrigeration, and medical and medical equipment, and plan ahead before a breakdown:

— Install carbon monoxide and fire alarms and be sure to replace the batteries regularly.

— Create a pet emergency kit if you have pets in the home and also make sure to stock up on the food they need.

— Stay connected for updated information. Sign up for SMS alert systems and alert apps to stay informed about the power outage.

— Make sure you have surge protectors on all appliances.

— Prepare for your heating and cooling needs. You cannot use outdoor heaters, stoves or generators to heat your home, so you may need to plan to stay elsewhere during a power outage.

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