Major Power Outages
Losing power can cause major difficulties if you use assistive devices that rely on electricity and need to be charged. In some instances, a major loss of power could be life threatening.
Depending on the emergency, power outages could happen without warning and be prolonged. You may not be able to keep your mobile phone charged, keep temperature sensitive medications cool, or run assistive technology that relies on electricity.
Back-up Power Sources and Alternatives
The following checklist is from the ADA National Network in the US, but has useful information and suggestions on how to prepare for an emergency power outage, especially during an emergency when you may not get any warning.
Life Support Equipment and Electricity
Losing power can have catastrophic consequences for people who use life support equipment. Electricity retailers have a responsibility to support people who rely on life support equipment, including notifying them in advance of any scheduled outages and ensuring priority reconnection in the event of an unscheduled outage. To be eligible for this, you need to have your details listed on a life support register.
Ausgrid has information on how to register as a Life Support user. Ausgrid also has a general resource to help people who use life support equipment prepare for outages here.
If Ausgrid is not your electricity distributor, you should contact your electricity retailer in the first instance, and they should be able to assist you to identify your distributor, which can then add you to their Life Support Register.
All electricity retailers have information about life support services on their websites.