of the most common survival situations Americans face is a long term power outage.
Here in the United States, especially in rural areas short term power outages lasting 10 minutes to a couple of hours are fairly
common. Short term outages are often caused by auto accidents or blown
transformers and are generally more of a nuisance than an actual threat to
a families safety. Long term outages on the other hand can leave you cold,
without access to fresh water and the ability to cook food.
When I think of long term power outages I'm talking about being without
electricity for 48 hours or more. Although this isn't something most of us
have had to face very often, these outages actually occur more often than
you think. Long term outages are usually regional and most often caused by
natural disasters such as flooding, hurricanes or tornadoes and sometimes
severe weather like ice storms. Another serious threat we face to our
power grid is either a terrorist attack to major relays stations or the
more hands off threat of computer hackers shutting down entire regions of
Below is a partial list of major long term power outages in North America. To
learn how you can prepare for an outage in your area read
How To Survive A Long Term Power
- New Jersey - Hurricane Sandy hit on October 29, 2012 and left
more than 8,000,000 people without electricity in New Jersey, New York,
Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maryland, West Virginia, Ohio,
and New Hampshire
- Massachusetts, Connecticut - an October 2011 snowstorm hit
the east coast leaving over 2,000,000 homes and businesses without
power, some without electricity for up to 7 days
Alabama, Tornado - In April 2011, 340,000 residents in and around
Huntsville Alabama were without electricity for 6 days after tornadoes
struck the region.
- Connecticut - On March 14, 2010 hundreds of thousands of
people were left without power in Connecticut, Long Island, and New
Jersey for as long as 6 days..
- Kentucky, Indiana - On January 27, 2009 an ice storm hit
Kentucky and Southern Indiana knocking out power to over 750,000 people.
18 days later more than 12,000 people still didn't have power.
- USA, Northeastern - On December 12, 2008 an Ice Storm caused
more than 1,500,000 people to loose power from Maine to Pennsylvania,
Some homes were without power for two weeks.
- Texas - On September 8, 2008, Hurricane Ike made landfall
near Galveston Texas leaving more than 2,000,000 homes and businesses
without power. !,000,000 homes power were restored by day 6, and it took
up to 16 days to get power to the other 1,000,000 customers.
- Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska - December 8, 2007, a series of
ice storms caused outages to over 1,000,000 homes and businesses lasting
four days or more in some areas.
- Louisiana, Florida - August 31, 2005, Hurricane caused wide
spread power outages in Louisiana, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi,
Tennessee, and Kentucky. Power was out to some areas for months with the
New Orleans area being the hardest hit.
- North Carolina, Virginia - On September 18, 2003 Hurricane
Isabel made landfall at the Outer Banks in North Carolina. The storm
weakened as it moved North and inland causing major issues in Virginia,
West Virginia, and Washington D.C.. Electricity in numerous areas of
Virginia were out for days, in rural areas it was out for weeks with
more than 4,00,000 people loosing power.
- Quebec, Ontario, North East United States - The North
American Ice Storm of 1998 left 3,500,000 people without power. Some
people went without power for days, weeks, and even months with Quebec
being the hardest area hit.
- Washington & Idaho - On November 19, 1996 an ice storm in the
area around Coeur d'Alene, Idaho and Spokane, Washington causing power
outages lasting up to two weeks.