Seattle Commercial & Industrial Electrical Contractor
4826 B Street NW Suite 101 Auburn, WA 98001
Mon-Fri: 7AM- 4PM
02 Oct 2015

Fall and Winter Power Outage Preparation

The last major power outage in the Pacific Northwest was 5 years ago in November 2010. A week-long deep freeze resulted in a power outage for most home owners and businesses across the state. While our winters here in the Greater Seattle area never get nearly as bad as temperature drops in other locations, it is still important to prepare for electricity shortages caused by bad weather. Here are a few power outage preparation tips to get your business or home ready for the upcoming winter weather season.

1. Prepare and Stock an Emergency Kit

This will included the essentials, and any additional needs specific to your family or employees.

  • Water: 1 gallon per person, per day and a 3 day supply minimum
  • Non-perishable food
  • Flashlights
  • Batteries
  • Medications
  • Sanitation options
  • Extra cash

2. Keep a Full Tank of Gas

Many gas stations will not be able to supply gas during a power outage unless they carry back-up generators, so it is important to keep a full tank of gas—especially when you hear that a storm is in the forecast, along with a gasoline container stored in a safe place. Even if nearby gas stations still have power during an outage, many will inevitably be out of gas if the outage is due to freezing temperatures, since trucks delivering the gas cannot make it through the ice to supply stations. Share this tip with your teams at your business to help with individual employees’ safety.

3. Don’t Forget About Pets

Businesses that are pet friendly or homes that have four-legged family members sometimes forget to stock up on additional pet food, supplies, and any medications the animals are taking. And for the pets that need electricity for heat lamps or water pumps, make sure you have a battery operated back-up option to keep them safe and happy. Scaly, furry, and feathered family members will be glad you did in the event of an emergency.

Why Power Outage Preparation Matters

While not many weather-related power outages can be prevented, they can be prepared for. Becoming knowledgeable about electricity will help alíviate some of the stress from unexpected changes in our daily routines. Keeping your business or home as close to highly functioning through an electrical outage can be a more manageable feat when you’re prepared.

Even without power outages, are your electrical systems up to par? Contact Kirby Electric for more information on upgrading your lighting, electrical panels, and other important systems to make your office or warehouse safer and more efficient throughout the year.

About Kirby Electric

Kirby Electric, Inc. is a premier electrical contractor specializing in commercial and industrial electrical construction. Our dedicated and knowledgeable team of electricians, low voltage technicians and office staff are led by senior leadership whose core philosophy is consistently delivering exceptional service. Kirby Electric offers a wide array of services to meet the needs of our customers and ensure a smooth operation of their facilities. Learn more about our services by calling 253-859-2000.

09 Jun 2015

Workplace Electric Safety Tips


Even something as simple as changing a light bulb could result in a serious injury, potentially even death. That may seem like an overstatement, but it’s the truth. According to EFSI, every year in the United States, electrical incidents result in nearly 300 deaths and more than 3,500 injuries in the workplace, with 70% of the victims working in a non-electrical field. Electrical hazards may not be the leading cause of workplace injuries, but they are all-too-often fatal. Accidentally coming into contact with any electrically energized outlet is a real danger.

Because society is becoming increasingly more dependent on electricity, electrical safety is an issue no matter if you work in an office or a factory. To prevent possible injury, every workplace should spread the word about how to work safely with or near electricity.

When it comes to electricity, the small details matter. Keep yourself and others safe by following these tips:

Immediately repair or replace damaged equipment.

This one may be the most crucial. If an electrical product still operates despite damage, it’s easy to think it’s okay and ignore it. To do so is very dangerous. Neglecting to fix the damage, no matter how minor, could result in an injury.

If someone suffers from an electrical accident, don’t touch them until disconnecting the power source.

When someone is in danger, our first instinct is to rush to them. Electrical accidents are different in that way. Since our bodies are conductors, it’s crucial to unplug the power source first before helping so that more people do not get injured as a result.

Do not plug several items into one outlet.

One outlet shouldn’t be the go-to energy source for the entire workplace. There are generally only two plugins per outlet for a reason—it’s safer. Adding a power bar with an octopus connection and a few adapters on top of that is an accident waiting to happen.

Pull the plug, not the cord.

Pulling on the cord puts an undue amount of stress on it, and could result in damage to the cord. A few stray wires may pop out, eventually coming into direct contact with the skin. Pulling on the plug, however, not only eliminates this risk, but reduces the risk of damage to the cord, and therefore risk of injury.

Never use extension cords as permanent wiring.

If there’s a part of the workplace that needs a constant source of electricity but has no outlet, the best option is to have a professional install an outlet there rather than using an extension cord as a permanent solution.

Perhaps the most important tip: get your electrical work done from a reputable, experienced company. When it comes to something as dangerous and wild as electricity, businesses shouldn’t settle for less than the very best.

About Kirby Electric

Kirby Electric, Inc. is a premier electrical contractor specializing in commercial and industrial electrical construction. Our dedicated and knowledgeable team of electricians, low voltage technicians and office staff are led by senior leadership whose core philosophy is consistently delivering exceptional service. Kirby Electric offers a wide array of services to meet the needs of our customers and ensure a smooth operation of their facilities.

(Image courtesy of Kaboompics via pixabay)