In the wake of anticipated winds across California this week, PG&E (Pacific Gas and Electric Company) took a proactive stance in an effort to mitigate potential wildfires – the company turned off the power to millions of people in northern and central California.

It’s a serious subject, but the Pleasanton Police Department in California found a way to deliver important points while still having a sense of humor about the matter.

And their funny Facebook message points to a bigger issue that should be on the radar for anyone: are you ready if you lose power at home?

It doesn’t happen often in Yuma, but a strong monsoon storm or a decent windstorm can and will knock out power here.

“If you come home and everything is dark and nothing works, then yes, you are experiencing a power shutdown. Remain calm. Use your cell phone light to search frantically for the one flashlight you think you have in the house. It will be dead of course. Search for batteries. You will need four but only find three,” Pleasanton PD notes.

The takeaway? Every home should have a flashlight and batteries ready to go. It could be a storm, or it could be a car accident that takes out a power pole … but homes can and will lose power. Know where your flashlights and batteries are.

Pleasanton PD also recommends keeping portable phone chargers fully charged, in case they are needed. “However, keep in mind, should your teen’s phone run out of battery it could be a good thing. Watching them go through Tik-Tok or Instagram withdrawals could be good entertainment. Heck, it could even put them dangerously close to having to read a book by flashlight or doing something creative.”

The post is funny, but it relays a point: have something on hand for entertainment.

“Please do not call 911 and ask when the power will come back on. Our dispatchers are very good but they cannot see into the future. They will tell you they do not know and then disconnect so they can answer the other hundred calls from people asking about the power being out.”

Moral? Don’t bog down the 911 lines unless there is an actual emergency.

The post also addresses the need to keep the refrigerator and freezer closed to prevent food spoilage, disconnecting appliances and electronics to prevent a surge when power comes back on, and not using generators or grills indoor. It also notes the dangers of using gas stove tops or ovens as home heating sources: “Do what your mom used to tell you to do: Put on a sweater.”

The subject is a serious one – but Pleasanton’s lighthearted approach gets the point across and keeps people reading to the end.

And whether one lives in Pleasanton or in Yuma or in Maine, the message is still valid: Are you ready for a power emergency? If not, it’s easy to do – and still have fun, too.

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