In the aftermath of Hurricane Dorian, many Canadians in the Atlantic region are dealing with fallen trees, property damage, and power outages.
Here’s some Good Hands Advice to help keep you safe.
After the storm tips
- Keep out of any standing water. Hazards from floating debris, sewer contamination, live electrical wires, and slippery footing can make wading in flood waters extremely dangerous.
- Avoid fallen power lines.
- Keep the power off. If you’ve had water damage, do not turn on the power in your home. Ask your hydro company for assistance.
- Record the damage. If possible, and safe, record details of any damage before you clean up. Take photos and/or video to help with your insurance company’s assessment.
- Contact your insurance provider. Once you’ve assessed the damage as best you can, contact your insurance provider to make a claim or ask questions. If you are an Allstate customers, contact our claims team at 1-800-561-7222. Please be patient as we are experiencing higher than normal call volumes.
- If you require immediate assistance and reach out to local resources to help with emergency tarping or repairs, please keep all receipts for completed work.
During a power outage
- Use only battery-powered lights such as flashlights. Exercise caution if you must use candles and never leave them unattended. Battery-operated LED candles are a safer choice.
- Unplug major appliances to avoid a power surge once power returns.
- Prevent carbon monoxide poisoning by using generators, barbecues, and grills outdoors only.
- Ensure proper handling of food:
- Keep your fridge and freezer closed in order to maintain the cold temperature.
- A full freezer will keep food frozen for about 48 hours and a freezer that is half full will keep food frozen for about 24 hours. An unopened refrigerator will keep food cold for about 4 hours.
- Don’t place frozen food outside even in cooler weather. The sun’s ray could thaw the food and animals could contaminate your food.
- If you know the power outage will last a long time, take your food to a friend who has power.
- Check out the Canadian Food Inspection Agency’s website for more food safety tips.
- Use a solar or battery-powered charger to charge your cell phone. You can also charge it in your car and get updates on your car radio, but remove your car from the garage and keep it in a well-ventilated place to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.
- Check on neighbours, family, and elders to offer any help.
After a power outage
- Turn the main breaker back on once advised it’s safe to do so.
- Plug in only the most essential appliances first, and wait 10 to 15 minutes to give the electrical system time to stabilize before re-connecting everything else.
- Dispose of any thawed food that has been at room temperature for two or more hours. Food that still contains ice crystals or feels refrigerator-cold can be re-frozen. Also, clean and disinfect any areas that raw food has touched.
- Reset your clocks, automatic timers and alarms.
- Restock your emergency preparedness kit.
If you have any questions, contact your local Agency.