Emergency Preparedness

 

Whether it’s a hurricane, tsunami, or any other natural disaster, any lead time of notice for an impending weather occurrence is critical. Here are some helpful resources on what you can do to be prepared in regards to utilities (and more) before disaster strikes.

 

As part of your hurricane preparedness, be sure to manage your utilities. Plan ahead for power outages, water service interruptions or communications failures.

Manage Electricity

  • Install surge protectors – they help avoid overloading your electronic equipment and protect from power fluctuations.
  • Learn where and how to shut off your home’s electricity – don’t wait until the last minute to figure this out. Shutting the power off can prevent dangerous situations.
  • Develop a backup plan to power medical equipment –  If someone in your home has medical equipment that relies on power, contact your health provider about an emergency plan.
  • Use generators properly – If you own a whole-home generator, be sure to test it and fill the fuel to capacity if you have onsite fuel storage. If you plan on using a small portable generator to run small appliances in your home during a power outage, make sure you know the proper operation. Used improperly, they can create a fire hazard, risk of electrocution, or carbon monoxide poisoning.

Manage Water

  • Have enough water for at least 14 days – store at least 1 gallon of water per day for each person and each pet.
  • Routinely check the expiration or “use by” dates of stored drinking water and refresh if expired.
  • Scrub the tub – you may opt to use your bathtub to store water. If so, be sure to sanitize it first.

Manage Communications

  • Make a family communications plan – decide on a meeting place and make note of important numbers.
  • Back up your computer and scan important documents.
  • Fully charge devices and keep portable chargers handy.

Utility Emergency Preparedness Resources

Kauai Island Utility Cooperative’s Storm Sense

Hawaiian Electric Company’s Emergency Preparedness Handbook

Hawaii Gas Emergency Preparedness

Young Brothers Schedule Updates as it Relates to Natural Disasters

Disaster Preparedness Resources

Department of Commerce and Consumer Affair’s Preparing for Natural Disasters

Hawaii Emergency Management Agency (HI-EMA)

City and County of Honolulu Smartphone app

City and County of Honolulu Department of Emergency Management

Central Pacific Hurricane Center website

Other Related Resources

National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC): Consumers and Catastrophes Guide

Protect Yourself and Others from Electrical Hazards After a Disaster (CDC)

What You Need to Know When the Power Goes Out Unexpectedly (CDC)

Fact Sheet on Natural Disaster Recovery (OSHA/U.S. Department of Labor)

Before Giving to a Charity (FTC)

Disaster-related scams (PDF)

Disaster Safety

Safety tips During Power Restoration

Downed Power Line Safety

Here’s a few tips from the Electrical Safety Foundation International a non-profit organization dedicated exclusively to promoting electrical safety at home and in the workplace.