Flood, fire, national disaster, or the loss of power from high winds, snow, or ice could jeopardize the safety of your food. Knowing what to do before and after an emergency can help you reduce your risk of illness. By following these guidelines, you can also minimize the amount of food that may be lost due to spoilage.
Power outages can occur at any time of the year and it may take from a few hours to several days for electricity to be restored to residential areas. Without electricity or a cold source, food stored in refrigerators and freezers can become unsafe. Bacteria in food grow rapidly at temperatures between 40 and 140 °F, and if these foods are consumed, people can become very sick.