With Tropical Storm Karen expected to make landfall Saturday along Florida’s northern Gulf Coast, the Florida Public Service Commission (PSC) reminds consumers to have an emergency plan and suggests using the following checklist as a preparation guide:
• Keep a working radio, flashlights, extra batteries, candles, and oil lamps handy and make sure they’re in working order.
• Listen to the weather forecast for your area and always observe the advisories and warnings.
• Make a list of emergency phone numbers for police, fire, utilities, and ambulance.
• Make prior medical arrangements if you require respirators or other electricity-dependent medical equipment. If you require oxygen, check with your supplier about emergency plans.
• Always run portable generators outside the house and never inside, or in a garage. Also, never connect a generator directly to your home’s wiring.
• Get extra cash if you need to. ATMs are often shut down by a storm for a few days.
• Know the evacuation route for your area and keep your car fueled up in case an evacuation is ordered.
• Secure outdoor objects that might be blown away—trash cans, toys, patio furniture, hanging plants, etc.
• Store drinking water in clean bottles, jugs, and pitchers, as needed.
• Board up windows or protect them with storm shutters or tape.
“The PSC has ensured that Florida’s utilities have extensive response plans that are implemented during storm emergencies,” said PSC Chairman Ronald A. Brisé. “Repairs and outages are addressed according to these prepared plans, in order to restore service to consumers as soon as possible.”
He added, “With the utilities’ storm preparation plans activated, we want consumers to be safe and be prepared before, during, and after a storm, such as Tropical Storm Karen.”
For additional information, visit www.floridapsc.com.
Follow the PSC on Twitter, @floridapsc.