Back to Extreme Weather Safety

Food Safety

Safety Tips

During or following a power outage, follow these food safety tips:

  • If in doubt, throw it out. Remember, never taste suspicious food.
  • Keep your refrigerator and freezer doors closed as much as possible - this will keep foods cold for about four hours. A full freezer will keep the temperature for about 48 hours if the door remains closed. A freezer that is half full will keep the temperature for about 24 hours.
  • Be sure to keep meat, seafood, and dairy products as cold as possible. Discard any perishable food that has been above 40°F for over two hours.
  • If it looks like the power outage will continue beyond a day, prepare a cooler with ice for your freezer items.
  • Generally, the following items can be kept on a countertop:
    • Jams and jellies
    • Butter and margarine
    • Ketchup, mustard, pickles, relish and similar condiments
    • Fresh uncut fruits and vegetables
  • For guidelines on specific foods, visit the FoodSafety.gov website.
Alert Info