How to keep food safe during and after a power outage

The town of Chapleau is currently without power. This power outage is affecting approximately 444 homes and the cause is currently under investigation. Public Health Sudbury & Districts is offering the following food safety tips to affected residents.

  • During a power outage, avoid opening refrigerators and freezers unless absolutely necessary. A full freezer will keep food frozen for approximately 48 hours, while a freezer that is half full will keep food frozen for about 24 hours. An unopened refrigerator will keep food cold for approximately 4 hours.
  • After a power outage, carefully inspect all hazardous food items. Do not consume any food you think might not be safe.
  • Discard any food items in the refrigerator or freezer that have come in contact with raw meat juices.
  • Discard perishable foods such as milk and milk products, eggs, meat, poultry, fish, and shellfish that have been unrefrigerated for more than 2 hours. Discard any food with an unusual odour or texture.
  • Partial thawing and refreezing may reduce the quality of some food, but the food will remain safe to eat as long as the food still contains ice crystals or is at or below 4°C.
  • Keep in mind that food contaminated with bacteria might not look or smell spoiled—when in doubt, throw it out!

For more information on what to do with your food during and after an emergency, visit the Canadian Food Inspection Agency’s website on Food Safety in an Emergency, or call Public Health Sudbury & Districts at 705.522.9200, ext. 464 (toll-free 1.866.522.9200) to speak to a public health inspector.

This item was last modified on May 17, 2019