Fire Department Issues Warnings & Tips for Blackout


POSTED: Wednesday, June 8, 2011 - 3:22pm

UPDATED: Wednesday, June 8, 2011 - 6:46pm

EL PASO – The El Paso Fire Department is bracing for the possibility of rolling blackouts in the next few days, and has some important information to keep you safe.

El Paso Electric has said it could be forced to implement rolling blackouts around the city, if the massive wildfire burning in Arizona knocks out two vital transmission lines.

The power lines supply El Paso with 40% of its power.

If you're plunged into the dark, firefighters say you should not use candles for light because of the extreme fire hazard they pose. Instead, use battery powered lighting, such as flashlights.

Also, firefighters recommend unplugging appliances and electronics in an outage. There's a risk power could come back on when you're not home and you could forget that the appliance is on.

The department also issued this list of Heat Safety Tips.

However they say anyone can be affected by the heat of the summer sun, with triple digit temperatures being forecast for the El Paso area, fire officials are urging the public to take the necessary precautions to avoid becoming a victim of the heat.

Those most at risk of heat related illnesses are people over 65, the very young, people with low blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, malnutrition and those taking certain medications.

The risk is especially high when air conditioning is unavailable for long periods of time. The El Paso Fire Department offers the following Summer Heat Safety Tips:

Heat Exhaustion is a warning that the body is getting too hot.

Heat Stroke: Body organs start to overheat. A heat stroke can result in death.

Signs & Symptoms

For a Heat Stroke: These signs and symptoms can occur suddenly with little warning:

· Very high temperature.

· Hot, dry, red skin. No sweating.

· Deep breathing and fast pulse. Then shallow breathing and weak pulse.

· Confusion. Hallucinations.

· Convulsions.

· Loss of consciousness.

For Heat Exhaustion:

· Normal, low, or only slightly elevated body temperature.

· Cool, clammy, pale skin. Sweating.

· Dry mouth. Thirst.

· Fatigue. Weakness. Feeling dizzy.

· Headache.

· Nausea. Vomiting can occur.

· Muscle cramps.

Comments News Comments

Rolling black outs in triple digit heat? Really EP Electric? That's the best you can do? It didn't work so well when the temperatures were freezing. You all said that the blackouts would only last up to 45 minutes at a time. That was a lie. My neighborhood was without power for four HOURS in the freezing cold. How do you plan on avoiding deaths this time around as these are more dangerous conditions?

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