Helpful tips to prepare for hurricane season in Texas
In Texas, the hurricane season started on June 1, and is expected to extend to November 30. According to the predictions of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the 2012 hurricane season will have an average of 9 to 15 storms, of which 8 could become hurricanes, and a maximum of 3 could turn into major hurricanes. So, for Texas electricity consumers, it pays to know about some tips that would help them stay better prepared for the hurricane season.
General Electricity tips
Steer clear of metal fences as they might get energized by fallen power lines.
Proceed carefully while clearing or cutting fallen trees, as they may have entangled power lines.
If a broken power line falls on your car, it’s better to stay inside the vehicle and call for help using your cell phone. Since the power line will make your vehicle energized, you will be safe inside until help arrives.
In case you need to move out of the car due to life-threatening hazards or fire, jump out of it with both your feet touching the ground together. Try to jump as far as possible from the vehicle, and hop away ensuring that both your feet land on the ground all at once. Since rings of different voltages are formed by the fallen power line, it’s advisable not to run as your legs, while running, may "bridge" current from a higher voltage ring to a lower ring, which in turn could cause a shock. So, hop to get away at a safe distance.
In case you use a power generator, don’t use too many appliances or you may end up exceeding the generator’s recommended wattage. It’s also advisable not to connect the generator directly to the main fuse box or circuit panel of your home.
Use properly grounded, heavy duty extension cords for plugging your appliances directly to the generator. You should also ensure that the extension cords are not worn or frayed.
Place your generator in a region, which is well-ventilated. Never run it in a stuffy place or inside your garage. Remember that generators powered by gasoline produce carbon monoxide, and give up fumes that can be lethal.
Tips for flooded homes If your home gets flooded, keep these tips in mind to make sure that you don’t compromise on electrical safety.
In case the electrical outlets of your home become submerged, it’s advisable to call a licensed electrician before you try to restore power or turn on the main circuit breaker.
Once your electronic equipment and electrical appliances are submerged in water, wait for at least a week to let them get dry thoroughly. Then call a qualified repairperson to get them examined before you put them to use. It’s better not to try repairing a flood-damaged appliance on your own as it could cause an electrical shock or even death.
In case your outdoor AC system has been under water, its controls are likely to have water and mud accumulated inside. So, rather than trying to restart it, which could cause further damage and need costly repairs, it’s prudent to get the system checked by a competent air conditioning technician before using it.
Use these tips to stay safe during this hurricane season. Let your neighbors and friends know about them too to make them aware of the hazards and ensure their safety.
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Published on Jul 12, 2012
In Texas, the hurricane season started on June 1, and is expected to extend to November 30. So, for Texas electricity consumers, it pays to...