In this section
Staying safe during a power cut or power outage
- Take extra care during power cuts
- Keep torches and batteries where you can find them easily
- Turn off electrical equipment, except a light or a radio, so you know when power is restored.
Cooking during a power outage
- Never used cooking equipment designed for outside use, indoors. Don’t use camping stoves, portable barbeques, lit charcoal or a generator in an enclosed space as they are designed for outdoor use only. These devices need adequate ventilation and can produce poisonous carbon monoxide.
- If you are using a camping stove outdoors, take extra care and never change camping gas cartridges indoors or near ignition sources.
- Don’t use a camping heater indoors as poisonous carbon monoxide can be produced and be fatal.
- Only use gas or paraffin heaters in well-ventilated areas.
- Keep heaters away from curtains and furniture, and other flammable items, and never use them for drying clothes.
- Switch off and unplug portable heaters when you go out, are not in the same room, or when you go to bed.
- Carbon Monoxide detectors should be used in all rooms containing gas or paraffin heaters.
- Never use portable gas cylinder heaters in high rise flats
- Always change gas cylinders in the open air. Never change gas cylinders in an enclosed space.
- Never move a bottled gas or oil heater when it is lit.
- During a power cut use battery-operated lights or torches as an alternative light source. Other options include a wind-up torch, glow sticks or a shake light. If you use candles, make sure you follow these safety guidelines:
- Never leave candles unattended or go to sleep while they are lit
- Leave plenty of space above and around the candle and its holder
- Place candles in a draught-free area away from curtains, furniture and other flammable surfaces
- Choose a suitable site for your candles that is flat and stable
- Always use a proper candle-holder and fit the candle in firmly
- Always use a heat-resistant surface to place the candle holder on - e.g. a ceramic plate, especially for night-light candles
- Never place candles directly on televisions or other polished surfaces
- Keep candles out of reach of children and pets
- Never attempt to move a candle once it is lit
- Always use a candle-snuffer, or an unturned metal spoon to extinguish the candle and allow cooling before moving it
If you use a gas or paraffin lamp make sure it is working properly and used in a well-ventilated area.