With the threat of power outages as Hurricane Sandy makes its way toward the area, residents are urged to use precautionary measures when dealing with issues from storm damages.
As power goes out, some may choose to use a generator to help operate their houses. But it's important to do so with caution.
"No. 1, it needs to be outside. It can be dangerous while inside. That's the No. 1 safety issue," said Zach Zelewicz, plumbing pro at Lowe's, 701 N. Loyalsock Ave., Montoursville.
Although it shouldn't be kept inside, Zelewicz said generators should be covered by some sort of roof. He suggested an awning or other outdoor roofing.
Zelewicz added that generators should stay at least five feet away from any structure due to carbon monoxide and the heat they emit.
He said some generators can melt siding if placed too close to houses.
Another mistake some make is overloading their generators. Zelewicz said users should read the generator's directions before using it.
And only a professional should hook the generator directly to the home's service panel, he said.
But if the power goes out and no generator is available to keep appliances running, food remaining in any freezer has the potential to spoil, according to the Penn State Extension. Food inside a full freezer can last for about 48 hours without power if its door remains closed.
The extension suggested residents should find another freezer, either with a neighbor or relative, to put their food in if they can. If food does begin to thaw, it can be refrozen if it remains under 40 degrees, the extension said.
It also suggested that if someone expects a power outage, they should put their freezer between minus 10 degrees and minus 20 degrees until it does so.
It also noted that food unsafe for humans is unsafe for pets.
Penn State Extension contributed to this report.