Preparing for snow and ice in Kentucky also means preparing for your power to go out. In addition to winterizing your home and pipes and having flashlights, food, and water handy, it is also important to focus on staying warm. Constellation Energy Corporation recommends the following cold-weather emergency tips for staying safe and warm during a winter power outage:

  • Report the power outage to your local utility company.
  • Reduce your space and congregate in a small, insulated room, ideally with a heat source such as a fireplace or wood stove.
  • Hold on to existing heat (keep outdoor doors closed, do not linger going in or out).
  • Seal gaps in windows and doors by wedging rolled towels or blankets against them.
  • Cover drafty windows.
  • Let bright sunshine in during the day if windows are not drafty; cover windows at night when the sun goes down.
  • Dress in warm layers (thermal underwear base layer, one or two pairs of wool socks, insulated pants, loose warm shirts, water-repellant jacket, scarf, mittens, hat, and warm boots).

After the power outage is over, check your food supply to be sure your food is not spoiled. If you keep the refrigerator door shut, food in the refrigerator will be cold enough for approximately four hours. Food in a closed freezer, especially if packed full, can stay cold without power for up to 48 hours. If you are unsure, throw it out.  After the power outage is over, restock your supplies, look for damaged pipes, and assess your hot-water heater.


Bethesda Health & Wellness. (2017). Winter safety tips for older adults. Retrieved

Constellation Energy Corporation. (2021). Tips on how to prepare for a power outage in the winter. Retrieved

Source: Amy F. Kostelic, Associate Extension Professor for Adult Development and Aging

Social media post: One of the hardest things to do during a winter power outage is stay warm. We have some tips for keeping warm when a winter storm takes out the power.