Power Outages: Before, During, and After

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Before a Power Outage
•Build or restock your emergency preparedness kit, including a flashlight, batteries, cash, and first aid supplies.
•Make sure you have alternative charging methods for your phone or any device that requires power. For more information visit: Get Tech Ready
•Charge cell phones and any battery powered devices.
•Know where the manual release lever of your electric garage door opener is located and how to operate it.
•Purchase ice or freeze water-filled plastic containers to help keep food cold during a temporary power outage.
•Keep your car’s gas tank full-gas stations rely on electricity to power their pumps. If you use your car to re-charge devices, do NOT keep the car running in a garage, partially enclosed space, or close to a home, this can lead to carbon monoxide poisoning.
•Learn about the emergency plans that have been established in your area by visiting your state’s or local website so you can locate the closest cooling and warming shelters.
•If you rely on anything that is battery-operated or power dependent like a medical device determine a back-up plan.
•For more planning information tips visit: Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities and Others with Access and Functional Needs

During a Power Outage: Safety Tips
•Only use flashlights for emergency lighting, candles can cause fires.
•Keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed. Most food requiring refrigeration can be kept safely in a closed refrigerator for several hours. An unopened refrigerator will keep food cold for about 4 hours. A full freezer will keep the temperature for about 48 hours. For more information about food safety visit our food page.
•Take steps to remain cool if it is hot outside. In intense heat when the power may be off for a long time, consider going to a movie theater, shopping mall or “cooling shelter” that may be open in your community. If you remain at home, move to the lowest level of your home, since cool air falls. Wear lightweight, light-colored clothing. Drink plenty of water, even if you do not feel thirsty.
•Put on layers of warm clothing if it is cold outside. Never burn charcoal for heating or cooking indoors. Never use your oven as a source of heat.
•If the power may be out for a prolonged period, plan to go to another location (the home of a relative or friend, or a public facility) that has heat to keep warm.
•Turn off or disconnect appliances and other equipment in case of a momentary power “surge” that can damage computers and other devices. Consider adding surge protectors.
•If you are considering purchasing a generator for your home, consult an electrician or engineer before purchasing and installing.
Only use generators away from your home and NEVER run a generator inside a home or garage, or connect it to your home’s electrical system.

After a Power Outage
•Throw away any food that has been exposed to temperatures 40° F (4° C) for 2 hours or more or that has an unusual odor, color or texture. When in doubt, throw it out!
If food in the freezer is colder than 40° F and has ice crystals on it, you can refreeze it.
•Contact your doctor if you’re concerned about medications having spoiled.
•Restock your emergency kit with fresh batteries, canned foods and other suppliesOnly use flashlights for emergency lighting, candles can cause fires.

As we watch the news in Texas unfold, we are reminded of the importance of emergency preparation.

What should everyone in Los Angeles have? No, not an agent. You should have a fully stocked supply kit, ready to go, in case of aluefontn emergency. It should be kept in an easy-to-reach place, and every family member should know where the kit is. You can either build the emergency kit yourself or purchase it from a Red Cross store or another local supply outlet. Here are some of the important items that should be included.

Prescription medications and eyeglasses
Infant formula and diapers (if applicable)
Important family documents such as copies of insurance policies, bank account records, I.D. cards and, in case of separation, photos of family members and pets for identification
Cash and traveler’s checks
Battery powered flashlight (batteries included)
Cell phone charger (batteries included)
Nutrition/protein bars
Canned foods and juices
Eating Utensils
Can opener for food (if kit contains canned food)
Water (at least 1 gallon per person, per day)
Pet food and extra water for your pet (if applicable)
Work Gloves
Light Sticks (3 each; one lasts 12 hours)
Moist towelettes
Breathing Masks (NIOSH-N95)
Plastic Sheeting (10’x10′)
Rain Ponchos
Personal First Aid Kit
Roll of Duct Tape
Sleeping bag or warm blanket for each person
Complete change of clothing, including a long sleeved shirt, long pants and sturdy shoes. (Consider additional clothing if you live in a cold-weather climate.)
Personal Hygiene Kit (includes shampoo/body wash, wash cloth, toothbrush and toothpaste, comb, deodorant)
Books, games and/or puzzles for children
Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
Battery-operated radio or TV
Local maps

Los Angeles' official mass notification system: Sign Up!!

NotifyLA is the City of Los Angeles’ official mass notification system used to send voice messages, text messages and email messages to residents and businesses during times of emergencies and disasters. There are several things our homeowners should be doing with regard to emergency preparedness, and we suggest you follow this link and SIGN UP

NotifyLA is the City of Los Angeles’ mass notification system used to provide information regarding necessary actions, such as evacuations, to Los Angeles residents, businesses and subscribers via recorded phone messages, text messages or e-mail in case of emergencies or critical situations. Because NotifyLA uses the 911 database, only land-line numbers are automatically included in the system. In order to receive a notification via your cell phone, Voice over IP (VoIP) number or email, you must register those telephone numbers and/or e-mail address in NotifyLA. NotifyLA uses geomapping so alerts are targeted by geographic location. That means, alerts will only be sent to the subscribers in the area impacted by the emergency.

How does NotifyLA work? It’s a free, automated system used to send out alerts to the public about emergency and critical incidents. NotifyLA can reach the public via recorded telephone messages, text messages and emails.

Why are these messages important? This information will keep the public informed when a disaster occurs and will provide preemptive warnings in some cases.

Who will receive the communication? Landline phone numbers are automatically included in the system from information contained in the 9-1-1 database. Residents can opt into receiving text messages, calls to cell phones and emails by signing up for NotifyLA. Registration is FREE.

What kinds of messages will the public receive through NotifyLA?

-Early warning notices
-Disaster notifications
-Evacuation notices
-Public health notices
-Public safety notices of imminent or perceived threats to life or property

Is my personal information safe? Yes. The information you enter into NotifyLA is secure. The City of Los Angeles will not share or distribute any personal information and it will be solely used for providing emergency notifications only.

While every attempt will be made to contact residents and businesses in response to an emergency, there are factors that may impact the completion of those calls. These factors can include loss of electrical power, telephone company line capacity, busy conditions, caller ID blocking, etc.

Emergency Prep

Be Prepared for an Emergency! & Know Whom to Call

It will never happen is NOT a PLAN!!

What you will need:

  • Flashlight, sturdy shoes, whistle by each bed, & in your cars
  • Fire extinguisher, smoke alarm with working batteries
  • Food, water, medication, cash, pet supplies, gas for 7 days
  • Crucial documents including ID photos on flash drive/cloud
  • 2 family meeting places: 1 nearby, 1 farther away
  • A textable out-of-state contact
  • Emergency numbers including neighbors with needs
  • Know how to turn off gas, water, electricity

Printable poster to share is here:  SBRA-PSEP-poster-7-steps-border-ready.gov-courtesy-of.pdf (1064 downloads)

Important contact information and numbers for South Brentwood resources are here for your convenience

SBRA_Emergency_Resources.4.12.15.docx (1078 downloads)


Public Safety & Emergency Preparedness

It will never happen is not a PLAN!

SBRA has created a new Public Safety & Emergency Preparedness Committee chaired by Merri Huang, who is CERT trained and an EMT. The committee has partnered with the LAFD and LA EMD to create new ways to inform residents of public safety issues, and to provide education regarding how to prepare for an emergency or catastrophic event.

One such project is a flyer the committee created with the help of Captain Ken Cordaro, LAFD station 59. The flyer lists what you will need for any emergency with important contact numbers included on the back. We hope all multifamily residences throughout Brentwood will post these signs.  If you wish to install these signs, please contact SBRA at southbrentwood.org.  We can supply either a laminated flyer or a digital version is downloadable from our website.

SBRA will regularly post information about how to make your family, residence, pets and neighbors safe on our website.

Did you know that CERT training (Community Emergency Response Team Training) programs are available free to the community? Classes will be announced on our website and by email…so be sure to go to our website to sign up to be on the SBRA email list.

How to check for damage after a quake

We’ve all been there!! Uh oh! We just had a quake! Now what? After making sure you/your loved ones (including pets) are accounted for & safe, check out your home:

1. Check The External House Structure:
• Survey all portions of your house to see if any part collapsed or sustained damage.
• Check to see if the house shifted on its foundation, or fell away from the foundation in any place.
• Check to see if the house is noticeably leaning, or looks tilted from a distance.
• Look for severe cracks or openings, especially around outdoor steps or porches.
• If inside the house, check to see if you are experiencing seriously increased vibrations from passing trucks and buses.
• Look for cracks in external walls. Check to see if existing cracks in the walls are getting bigger.
• Check to see if mortars are separating from the blocks.
• Look for sink holes or large divots in the ground next to the foundation.
2. Check The Chimneys:
• Look for cracks between the chimney and the exterior wall or the roof.
• Look for cracks in the liner.
• Check to see if there is unexplained debris in the fireplace.
3. Check Utilities:
• Check to see if power lines to your house are noticeably sagging.
• Check to see if hot water heater is leaning or tilted.
• Check to see if all the water connections, dry-pipes, toilets, faucets are secure.
4. Check the Inside Of the House:
• Check to see if doors and windows are harder to open, and if doors do not shut properly.
• Check to see if the roof is leaking. Look for water damage to the ceiling.
• Check to see if the furnace has shifted in any way, and if ducts and exhaust pipes are connected and undamaged.
• If inside the house, check to see if you are experiencing unexplained draftiness. Look for cracks in the walls, poorly aligned window frames, and loosened exterior siding. They can all let in breezes.
• Check to see if the floor is separated from walls or stairwells inside the house.
• Look for cracks between walls and built-in fixtures such as lights, cupboards or bookcases.
• Look for gaps around plumbing pipes that exit the foundation wall.
According to FEMA, the effects of an earthquake are sometimes slow to appear. Residents are urged to inspect their homes for damages that may have just come to light. Officials said walls can separate and cracks start to form weeks after the earthquake strikes.
FEMA officials said earthquake damages can be subtle as well. If not fixed in time, cracks between the walls can allow water to leak in and cause serious problems in the future, for example, rotting wood or a problem with mold. A structure that has shifted from its foundation leaves unsupported areas weakened and liable to break away.
If you discover problems in your house caused by the earthquakes, you may contact your local emergency management agencies.
For additional information see