PENDER COUNTY – Many Pender County residents are preparing generators for use during Hurricane Florence. Pender County Emergency Management and Pender County EMS and Fire urge residents to use generators with caution.
“The major hazards when using a generator is carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning from the toxic engine exhaust,” said Tom Collins, Pender County Emergency Manager.
Electrocution and fire are safety hazards too, said Collins. “Don’t operate a generator indoors or inside a garage.”
When operating a portable generator, keep it in an open, outside area, instructed Collins.
“Do not connect the generator directly to your main electrical panel,” Collins said.
If a generator is installed incorrectly, power could flow into outside lines and cause injury or death to your family, neighbors and utility crews working in the area, Collins said.
To avoid electrocution, keep the generator dry and do not use in rain or wet conditions. Operate it on a dry surface under an open canopy-like structure, such as under a tarp held up on poles. Do not touch the generator with wet hands.
Be sure to turn the generator off and let it cool down before refueling. Gasoline spilled on hot engine parts could ignite.
Store fuel for the generator in an approved safety can. Use the type of fuel recommended in the instructions or on the label on the generator.
Following Hurricane Florence, Pender County could be left without electric. Residents using generators should use caution.
Pender County Emergency Management will post updates on the Facebook page at facebook.com/penderem and on the website http://www.penderem.com. If you need assistance call the EM office at 910- 259-1210.