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Prepare Now for El NiƱo

El Niño is throwing a tantrum.

“Whether we’re more likely to have an ice storm, snow storm, significant flooding or severe weather outbreak, it’s all up for grabs.”

That’s what the meteorologists at the National Weather Service Forecast Office in Atlanta are saying about the coming winter.

It’s due to a record-breaking El Niño that’s already cranked and running. “El Niño had been dragging its feet the last year and a half,” says NWS Meteorologist Adam Baker. “But it looks like it’s more than making up for its previous lack of presence.”

Just what is El Niño? It’s abnormally warm seas in the tropical Pacific that trigger a shift in nearby weather circulations, including the jet stream pattern across the U.S.

Walton EMC plans for large outages and maintains its power lines all year long. We urge you to plan for catastrophes, too.

Your disaster plan should include these provisions in case the power goes out:


  • Use flashlights and battery-powered lanterns. LED models conserve batteries.
  • Have extra batteries.
  • Avoid flames for light sources.


  • Stock up on non-perishable foods that don’t require cooking.
  • Have a manual can opener.
  • Don’t use charcoal indoors.

Water (if you’re on a well)

  • Fill tubs for household use.
  • Fill pitchers and jars for drinking.


  • Gather heavy clothing, gloves, sock hats, blankets and sleeping bags.
  • Close off one room and stay there.
  • Get wood now if you have a fireplace.


  • Get a battery-powered radio.
  • Get a car charger for your cellphone.
  • Log on to waltonemc.com or use our mobile app to report outages and get updates.


  • Have a first aid kit.
  • Have a several days’ supply of prescriptions.
  • Make contingency plans for patients who depend on electricity for medical devices. This may include moving the patient to another location.


  • Operate away from house and garage to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.
  • Use proper connections to your home’s electric system.

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