Pascoag Utility updates its “Priority List” before the start of hurricane season each year. This list contains customers who are dependent upon electricity to power life support equipment. If you have special requirements, please fill out the Priority Customer Registration Form and mail or drop it off to the District’s office.
Although you will be given a high priority designation, Pascoag Electric cannot guarantee the continuance of electricity in an emergency situation, nor can the District guarantee that your service will be the first restored after an outage.
It is important that you make provisions for emergencies, such as back up generation or an evacuation plan in the event of a prolonged outage. If you are dependent upon electricity to power life support equipment, please incorporate back up generation in your family’s plan. In the event you do not have back up generation, please plan to evacuate your family to a community shelter that can provide you with electricity.
Form a Plan and Make an Emergency Kit
If a hurricane, snow storm or other emergency occurs, are you ready? Here’s a basic checklist, along with some other ideas to help you plan for any emergency.
- Water, one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days for drinking and sanitation.
- Food, at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food that does not need to be warmed.
- Land line phone with chord or cell phone with chargers and a backup battery (Cordless phones need electricity to operate)
- Battery-powered radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert and extra batteries
- Flashlight and extra batteries
- First aid kit
- Whistle (to signal for help)
- Dust mask (to help filter contaminated air)
- Plastic sheeting and duct tape (to shelter in place)
- Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties (for personal sanitation)
- Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
- Manual can opener for food
- Prescription medications, eyeglasses and/or contact lenses with solution
- Infant formula, bottles, diapers, wipes and diaper rash cream
- Pet food and extra water for your pets (Your pet should wear a collar with its rabies tag and identification at all times)
- Important family documents such as copies of insurance policies, identification and bank account records saved electronically or in a waterproof, portable container
- Fire extinguisher
- Matches (in a waterproof container)
- Paper plates, cups and plastic utensils, paper towels, moist towelettes
- Sleeping bag or warm blanket for each person
- Complete change of clothing appropriate for your climate and sturdy shoes
- Hand tools such as a hammer, screwdriver; scissors; duct tape; plastic garbage bags; paper and pencil; waterproof matches; household bleach
- Books, games, puzzles, or other activities for children
- Prepare a Family Communications Plan (your family may not be together when an emergency strikes, so plan how you will contact one another and review what you will do in emergencies)
Additional Emergency Supplies
Since Spring of 2020, the CDC has recommended people include additional items in their kits to help prevent the spread of coronavirus or other viruses and the flu.
Consider adding the following items to your emergency supply kit based on your individual needs:
- Cloth face coverings (for everyone ages 2 and above), soap, hand sanitizer, disinfecting wipes to disinfect surfaces
- Non-prescription medications such as pain relievers, anti-diarrhea medication, antacids or laxatives
- Cash or traveler’s checks
- Feminine supplies and personal hygiene items
Maintaining Your Kit
After assembling your kit remember to maintain it so it’s ready when needed:
- Keep canned food in a cool, dry place.
- Store boxed food in tightly closed plastic or metal containers.
- Replace expired items as needed.
- Re-think your needs every year and update your kit as your family’s needs change.
Kit Storage Locations
Since you do not know where you will be when an emergency occurs, prepare supplies for home, work and cars.
- Home: Keep this kit in a designated place and have it ready in case you have to leave your home quickly. Make sure all family members know where the kit is kept.
- Work: Be prepared to shelter at work for at least 24 hours. Your work kit should include food, water and other necessities like medicines, as well as comfortable walking shoes, stored in a “grab and go” case.
- Car: In case you are stranded, keep a kit of emergency supplies in your car.
It’s important that you stay informed about what might happen and know what types of emergencies are likely to affect your area, as well as emergency plans that have been established by your state and local government. This information was provided by ready.gov, visit them for more information.
Tips to Remember
- Stock up on canned goods, juices, power/granola bars, peanut butter and trail mixes.
- Keep icepacks in the freezer or freeze jugs of water.
- If and outage occurs, keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed. A full freezer will keep food frozen for 36- 48 hours if you only open the doors when absolutely necessary. A half full freezer usually keeps food frozen for 24 hours.
Shelter and Heating Safety
- Gather your family in a central location in the house or apartment where you have an alternative heating source.
- At night pull drapes or blanket across the windows to minimize the amount of heat escaping. During the day open the drapes to let the maximum amount of heat in.
- If the indoor temperature drops to 55º, open the faucets slightly so that there is a drip. This will prevent the pipes from freezing.
- If candles and heaters are being used, they should never be left unattended. Pay special attention to children and pets that are near candles or heaters.
- A fuel-burning heater, such as a kerosene heater, requires proper ventilation to prevent buildup of harmful fumes. Place heaters on a hard, noncombustible surface.
- Never leave children or pets alone with a portable heater in use.
- Never use gasoline or other flammable liquids to start or quicken a fire. Always keep a screen around an open flame and don’t close the damper while ashes are still hot.
- Never use a gas range for room heating.
- Never use charcoal as an indoor heating or cooking source.
Portable generators are helpful in the event of a temporary power outage, but misuse can cause serious injury or death. To protect yourself, your neighbors and Pascoag District Line personnel, please follow these tips when using back-up generators.
- Before you use your generator, thoroughly read and understand all of the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Isolate your generator from the District’s power lines and connect appliances directly to the generator with the appropriate size grounded three conductor electrical cords.
- If you want to connect a generator directly through your homes wiring, use a licensed electrician.
- Never refuel a generator while it is operating.
- Ensure the generator has adequate ventilation and cooling to prevent overheating and accumulation of toxic exhaust fumes.
- Do not install generators in the basement, attached garage or enclosed areas. The exhaust gases contain carbon monoxide which is an invisible odorless poisonous gas.
- Maintain your generator engine according to the maintenance schedule for peak performance and safety.
- Keep gas fresh. If you don’t plan on using your generator for up to 30 days, use a gas stabilizer.
Downed Power Lines
If you see a downed power line call Pascoag Utility immediately 401-568-6222. Always assume that any downed power line you see is live. Some power lines will not spark or burn but they are still live. Any connection that line makes with a nearby object could energize that object as well. Stay well away from that area!
Call 401-568-6222 to report an outage or downed wire. Follow us on Twitter @PascoagUtility or “Like” us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/PascoagUtilityDistrict for updates during a storm or emergency.