Norfolk County wishes to advise residents that emergency teams are out working on all issues due to this evening’s strong winds.
Power outages are occurring across Norfolk County. Coordination is taking place with all area agencies and departments in order to keep all Norfolk County residents safe and secure.
Highway 3 between Courtland and Tillsonburg is currently closed to motorists due to downed power lines.
Norfolk Power and HydroOne advises Residents to expect outages to continue into the evening. Further updates will follow as soon as they can be made available. Intermittent power disruptions can be expected subject to changes in the weather.
Motorists are urged to avoid travel in the Norfolk County area due to downed power lines and tree limbs.
Keeping safe during the power blackout
Norfolk County offers the following safety advice to local residents who are affected by the current power blackout.
Potable Water Safety
All Residents connected to a municipal water supply can be assured that the water distribution system is safe. Emergency back-up generators will continue to maintain a safe drinking water system for all users. The Public Works & Environmental Services Department does however suggest limiting water to indoor use only for the duration of the power outage.
Do not leave burning candles unattended. Battery powered flashlights or lanterns would be the preferred option.
Cooking with barbecues or camp type stoves should be conducted outdoors. Do not bring these devices indoors. Be certain to operate these devices away from open doors and windows and be a safe distance away from any structure.
When using a generator for auxiliary power, ensure that it is operated outdoors, away from windows and other openings. Do not operate a generator in a closed space such as a garage or basement.
Older gas furnaces and boilers may continue to operate without a power supply. Residents should turn the thermostat down or off as appropriate.
Bacteria can make food unsafe to eat. Some bacteria can cause sickness, so it’s important to lower your risk of foodborne sickness by following these steps:
- Without electrical power, a full upright or chest freezer will keep everything frozen for about two days. A half-full freezer will keep food frozen for one day.
- Without electrical power, the refrigerator will keep food cool for four to six hours.
- Throw out all food with a strange colour or odour as soon as possible. Make sure raw meat, poultry and fish are wrapped well and kept in the coldest part of your fridge.
- Throw out all food that has been sitting at room temperature for more than two hours.
- By keeping the freezer closed, you can help your food last as long as possible. Ice can also help keep the freezer cold.
Throw out the following foods if the electrical power to your refrigerator has been off for more than four hours:
- raw or cooked meat, poultry and seafood
- milk, cream, yogurt, soft and semi-soft cheese
- cooked pasta, rice and potatoes
- custard, pudding, chiffon, cheese pies
- casseroles, soups, stews
- refrigerated cookie dough
- cream-filled pastries
- all salads
- fresh eggs and egg substitutes
- all food with a strange colour or odour
The following foods are safe without refrigeration:
- margarine and butter
- fresh fruits and vegetables
- peanut butter, jams and jellies
- breads, uncooked pastas and flour
- ketchup, barbecue sauce, mustard
- unprepared powdered milk, dry and canned food
- hard or processed cheeses
Safe water is needed for drinking, brushing teeth, washing fruits and vegetables, cooking and cleaning. Keep a supply of commercial bottled water at your home. Use another municipal water supply not affected by the power blackout. Use water from a private well that is not run by a generator.
If you need information on the proper storage of your prescription drugs that require refrigeration, such as insulin, call your doctor or local pharmacist.
For more food safety questions, call the Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit at 519-426-6170 or 905-318-5367.