Cut Off: Looking After Your Kids During A Power Outage
You’ve just sat down to a delicious family dinner when the overhead lights suddenly start to flicker. The wind’s picking up outside and your kids are staring open-mouthed at the rain rolling, in heavy sheets, down the windows. Suddenly, the room’s plunged into utter darkness, and you’re sitting there fighting the panic rat wondering what on earth to do next.
Flickr Image At: Gatanass
Have A Family Power Cut Plan
You’re in luck if your family is all together when the outage happens, but sadly power cuts aren’t always so convenient. Walking around in the dark can easily cause an injury, trip or fall so everyone should know what to do when one happens. Smaller children should be taught to stay put; it’s too dangerous for them to walk downstairs alone, so if they’re in their bedrooms and can see enough they should climb onto their bed or just stay on the carpet. If they’re playing downstairs they should gather on the living room sofa, while older kids and teenagers should grab torches to locate anything you may need such as drinks, snacks, and the odd board game or two. Make sure a spare phone stays charged as you may need it to call the power company or to check on a family member’s welfare.
Flickr Image At: Cezary Borysiuk
Keep Candles And Torches To Hand
No one wants to be frantically digging around in drawers when they can’t even see. Keep all lighters, matches, and candles together, away from small fingers, in one handy space in the kitchen. Running low on batteries? Head to your nearest dollar store to stock up as well as buying a few wind-up or USB torches. Should the power cut strike in the dead of night you’re going to need as much light as possible. Choose a high, powerful flashlight with a bright, circular beam that’ll light up ground at least a few feet in front of you.
Flickr Image At: Henry Burrows
Distract Kids With An Indoor Picnic
Gather some blankets and pillows together in the living room and make sure you close the door behind you. When the electricity goes off so will your thermostat, so if you’re not careful, the house will get cold pretty quickly. Distract young children by asking them to build a pillow fort, then take a storm lantern into the kitchen and make sandwiches, fruit cups, and cheese sticks. Keep it casual, use paper plates and cups to minimize clean up and then start setting up the monopoly board, candyland counters or start telling fun, silly stories. Why not tell your kids about previous events in history? What they were like as babies? Or memories from your own childhood?
Flickr Image At: eflon
Buy A Solar Generator
If you live in a remote area or a location that’s subject to lots of storms, electrical faults, and power cuts, then it may be worth learning how to use portable solar generator. When the lights go out, you won’t need to panic because you’ll know and be comforted by the fact you’ve got a trusty backup waiting to be switched on. Solar generators are also particularly useful for large families as lots of perishable food needs to be thrown away when severe power outages lasts longer than a couple of days.