If the power goes out in your house or apartment: what to do first and where to call

If the power goes out, the first thing to do is find out the cause of the emergency

At the very beginning of the cold season, Ukrainians found themselves in a situation where the electricity supply may not be the most reliable. It would be easy to criticize the authorities, the housing and utilities sector, or electrician Vasya, but the reason is more global. The reason for the unexpected loss of light may be another shelling of critical infrastructure by Russian aggressors or problems due to overloading of the power grid, which can also be seen as the hand of the Kremlin.

The fact is that a possible gas shortage could lead to the fact that Ukrainians' apartments will not be sufficiently heated by centralized heating during the heating season, and therefore most Ukrainians will start using electric heaters to keep warm on cold evenings. This, in turn, will lead to a significant increase in the load on the power grid, which, admittedly, has not been developing in Ukraine as fast as the "appetites" of cities and new districts. And when the load reaches its peak, hello, blackout.

However, blackouts can be avoided if everyone simply does what they can to reduce "excessive" energy consumption. OBOZREVATEL tells you what to do if the power goes out and how to consume electricity more responsibly.

What to do if the power goes out unexpectedly

First of all, do not panic and check the extent of the problem by simply looking out of the window. If you're the only one without power, you may have just knocked out the circuit breaker located near the meter. Turning it on is quite simple, but it should be done by a person who understands what they are doing and will not leave the neighbors without power. That's why it's better to contact the housing and communal services or a local electrician, whose phone numbers you should have written down long ago.

If there is no light everywhere, you should call the company that supplies the electricity and provide your address. If you're lucky, they'll tell you when to expect the power to be restored. If the power outage is global, you can also check the supplier's social media, which will likely already have a message about the start of repair work and the estimated time of completion.

In the meantime, you should unplug, if not all appliances, then at least those that consume the most energy. It is worth allowing the power grid to start up in normal mode, not under peak load conditions. In addition, you should not dismiss the factor of human error when repairing the network, which can lead to power outages that will damage your devices.

How to reduce electricity consumption

Speaking about the long-term perspective, it's a good idea to change all the light bulbs in your apartment to LEDs. They will last for years and consume less electricity than conventional incandescent bulbs.

If you use electric water heaters, you should clean the heating element at least once every six months, as its contamination causes the water heater to take longer to heat the same volume of water, and this will consume more electricity.

You should also not keep all appliances plugged in all the time. Although they do not consume as much current in sleep mode, they still consume and create a certain load on the network. And, as the Ukrainian saying goes, "it's easier to beat a father when you're in a band."

You can also use a gas stove more often to cook or reheat food, instead of faster but "voracious" multicookers or microwaves.

It's also a good idea to get rid of the habit of using the TV as a background while cooking or doing other household chores. The cost of electricity is likely to far outweigh the quality of the background information that the brain will consume.

Finally, it is worth adding that even in an apartment when no one sees you, you should dress "according to the weather". There is no common sense in heating your apartment with electrical appliances if you just want to walk around in shorts and a T-shirt in December, barefoot.

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