Food Safety After A Flood or Power Outage

During and after a power outage or flood it is important to consider the safety of your food and water to protect against any food or waterborne illnesses.

Flood water may carry silt, raw sewage, oil or chemical waste. Food and water may become contaminated if it comes in contact with contaminated flood water. Even if a food package appears dry it may have been contaminated if the flood water covers or seeps into food containers. It is important to inspect all food items thoroughly prior to use and consumption. Any items that have been in contact with contaminated flood water should be discarded. If your water source is a private well, it may also become contaminated with floodwaters making it unsafe to drink, cook and prepare foods with. Use alternate water sources for any water needs.

A power outage can also result in certain foods becoming potentially hazardous for consumption because foods cannot be maintained at 4 C (40 F) or less.  As a rule of thumb, an unopened refrigerator will keep foods cool for 4 – 6 hours without power. Where a refrigerator has been opened and closed, the temperature cannot be maintained. It is recommended that any hazardous foods (meat, fish, dairy, eggs or prepared foods) be disposed. If you are unsure if a food is safe for consuming, remember, when in doubt, throw it out.  

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Posted in All News, Announcer Blogs, Denyse

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