Power failure in winter season:
Never use outdoor or camping equipment indoors such as charcoal or propane barbecues, propane heaters or stoves. These devices increase the risk of fire and release carbon monoxide, an odorless and deadly gas.
If you use a generator, follow the manufacturer's instructions and observe the safety rules mentioned there.
STORE IN YOUR HOME IN A SAFE PLACE:
Battery operated radio;
Fondue stove and recommended fuel;
If you own a wood stove or fireplace, stock up on fuel;
Install a carbon monoxide alarm and check regularly for proper operation.
DURING THE BREAK:
Listen to the news with a battery-powered radio;
Disconnect all electrical and electronic equipment, except one lamp per floor, in order to avoid overvoltage of appliances when power is restored;
Do not open the refrigerator or freezer door unnecessarily. Food will be preserved for 24 to 48 hours;
Unless otherwise directed by your municipality, let a trickle of water run and flush the toilet a few times during the day to prevent freezing of the pipes;
If you have an auxiliary heater, turn it on before your home gets too cold. If you need to connect to the chimney flue used for the usual heater, close it before making the connection.
IF THE OUTAGE IS EXTENDED AND IT BECOMES TOO COLD INSIDE:
Leave your home. If you do not know where to go, contact your municipality;
Bring with you essential items and your emergency kit;
Before leaving, close the main water inlet and drain the piping. Put antifreeze in the toilets and sinks and wash basins;
Close the main power switch.
WHEN ELECTRICITY RETURNS:
Make sure the water heater is full before turning on the power;
Restore power by opening the main switch;
Open the water inlet and faucets to allow air to escape;
Do not open the gas yourself; ask a specialist to do it.
ATTENTION TO FOOD INTOXICATION
Discard perishable foods exposed to temperatures above 4ºC for more than two hours.
Discard foods that show signs of deterioration such as mold or bad smells.
Never refreeze thawed foods. Partially thawed foods may be returned to the freezer.
Most home insurance policies provide coverage for loss of food held in the freezer. Contact your insurance agent or broker for details of the coverage in your policy.
For further information visit the website of the Ministère de la sécurité publique.