What to do in a power outage
When the weather outside is frightful, it's important to be prepared in case there is a power outage which can be caused by windstorms, heavy snow or other extreme weather conditions. Here is what you need to know in the event of a power outage:
- If your power has been disconnected by your utility provider due to damage by the storm, homeowners may be required to obtain an electrical safety check before power will be reconnected. If you are instructed this is the case, please contact a licensed electrical contractor to perform an electrical safety check on your electrical system, and make any necessary repairs. You can use our Find a Contractor search tool to find one. Note: Technical Safety BC safety officers are available to provide advice and assistance to contractors, but they do not physically perform these electrical safety checks for homeowners.
- Once the contractor has verified your electrical system is safe, they will contact the utility (e.g., BC Hydro) and submit a declaration for reconnection. If repairs are required, those must be completed before reconnection can be obtained. These repairs must be done under permit (your contractor will pull the permits).
- Technical Safety BC is aware that sometimes contractors are unable to obtain permits after extreme weather events due to computer issues, transportation issues, our office being closed, etc. We do not wish to delay restoration of power. In emergency situations, contractors can complete the work without a permit provided that they obtain a permit on the next business day, as detailed in this directive. This will help facilitate faster restoration of power for homeowners. Note: Homeowners are NOT permitted to undertake this type of emergency repair work themselves.
Homeowners experiencing power outages are reminded to take precautions around carbon monoxide:
- If you are using a generator to provide power, never use in enclosed spaces such as a garage, or near windows or any ventilation system as they pose the risk of carbon monoxide. Always follow the manufacturers' instructions.
- Use caution when using propane cooking stoves, lanterns, etc. Never use these items in an enclosed space or as a means of heat. If you are barbecuing because you are unable to cook with your stove, ensure the barbecue is kept away from doors and windows.
- If you or your family members are feeling nauseous, dizzy or weak, it may be caused by carbon monoxide. Get into fresh air immediately and call 9-1-1.
If you have questions, please contact us.