Why Are There Rolling Blackouts in California?
You may be asking, “Why are there rolling blackouts in California?” California is now experiencing a massive preventive blackout to prevent more wildfires from igniting. Northern and Central California has seen many fires burn down acres of vegetation where most of these fires started when faulty power lines are knocked down by strong winds and have come in contact with dry bushes as the dangerous fire season returns in the state.
It gets difficult when you are relying on your heating unit to keep you warm.
The Pacific Gas & Electric Company (PG&E), the largest utility company that supplies electricity in the state, has been cutting off power in residences and businesses. Residents were heavily impacted by Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) which was implemented when strong and gusty winds heightened the fire-risk of dry and vegetated lands. This is also a precautionary measure by PG&E to avoid a repeat of the deadly Camp Fire that killed 85 civilians, injured firefighters, burned down several thousands of homes and more than 150,000 acres of land was destroyed.
This is a dark time for the people affected by preventive blackouts. And there is no guarantee that no more power shutoffs will be announced knowing that the wildfire season isn’t over yet.
How to Stay Warm During Blackouts
There are great ways to stay warm even without electricity. Be wise about it to stay safe and comfortable.
Add more layers to your clothes. Thermal underwear can become your best friend. Wear one then put on more shirts than usual, a pair of thick socks, a jacket, and a hat that covers your ears. This will help trap body heat so you can stay warm even without access to proper heating.
Stay in closed rooms. Stay in a room with fewer windows and preferably a small one. Have your family huddle in the area and make sure that both windows and the door are shut and sealed so everyone’s body heat is trapped. It will warm up every member of the family. Be sure to close unused rooms as well. Stay away from the parts of the house where the wind is coming from.
Blinds, curtains, and towels can help. Make use of those fancy curtains hanging by the windows. Pin them by the wall around the window so cold air won’t seep through the glass. If you don’t have curtains, make use of heavy blankets. You can also use towels to help block the cold. Roll them up and position them under the doors to cover the small openings. Make sure to cover any visible gaps you can see where cold air can possibly pass through.
Indulge in a warm drink. Hydrate yourself while staying warm by drinking warm liquid such as a cup of coffee, hot chocolate, calming tea, or a tasty soup. Constantly take in warm drinks to prevent your body temperature from dropping.
Sleeping bags, indoor tents. Yes, take out your outdoor tent and set it up inside, probably in the living room or any room in the house with enough space. The enclosed space provided by the tent will trap body heat. Sleeping bags are best at night. Ordinary blankets may not be enough to normalize your body temperature, but sleeping bags can trap every bit of body heat.
Considerations for Furnaces and Home Heating
Preventive blackouts are out of our control. But it doesn’t mean we can’t do something about the situation to survive the winter cold. Challenging times like this require a sound and fully operational home heater. It’s always better to have a reliable furnace than deal with a sudden breakdown when the power is finally back.