During the last week of January this year, Melbourne encountered an intense heat wave. Extreme temperatures can greatly increase the chance of a blackout – so, Melbourne businesses were forced to prepare accordingly.

This meant that the Alfred Hospital enacted a ‘Code Yellow’ where they switched off all non-essential lights and equipment. This was a part of their preparation for ‘increased patient demand and possible energy disruptions’.

If you’d like to know how to prepare for a blackout this season, take a look at the rest of our blog.

how to prepare for a blackout

The Alfred Hospital Prepares for a Blackout. Photo: Wayne Taylor. Source: The Age.


Emergency lights are installed and maintained in commercial and public spaces to ensure that:

  • people have a guided path to an exit route during an emergency
  • there are backup lighting options if the building suffers a power failure

During a blackout, we need our emergency escape lighting systems to be reliable. That’s why there is an Australian Standard for emergency lighting. According to the AS2293.2 standard for emergency lighting testing & inspection, business owners and operators must have their systems inspected at least once every 6 months.

If you want to know how to prepare for a blackout, take a look at our service page and get in touch with us for a free quote. If you have any questions about your compliance requirements, we’d be happy to put you in touch with your local fire safety technician for a chat.

Prepare your Power Outage Survival Kit

If you own or operate a small business, it is worth gathering the things you need during a power outage and making sure your staff members know where to access it.

The Australian Government recommends including a torch (or flashlight), batteries, cash, and first aid supplies in your blackout box. It is also a good idea to have a power bank or portable power source to charge your phones during an outage. This way, if you need to contact emergency services you can.

If you’d like more information about disaster supply kits in your workplace, take a look at this guid from the Australian Government: https://www.ready.gov/build-a-kit .

Make Sure Your Team Members are Informed

If you’re running a business, make sure your employees know how to prepare for a blackout. This includes knowing emergency contacts, having access to the survival kit, avoiding potential hazards, and being able to identify the signs of an oncoming power outage.

The risk of a blackout is greatly increased by the following factors:

  • extreme heat conditions
  • heavy rain and flooding
  • gale-force winds
  • bushfire
  • trees approaching power lines
  • animal intervention
  • Lightning

It’s worth making sure everyone knows the causes of a blackout in order to be prepared.

Get Your Business Back Up and Running

If you’re suffering a power failure that is only affecting your building, you might have a problem with your equipment or electrical circuitry. Have an emergency electrician on call so a professional can assess your needs as soon as possible and reduce and disruption to your business.

You can avoid a problem in the first place by regularly maintaining your equipment and circuit protection with our testing and tagging services, RCD testing, and PAT. Preventative maintenance is the key when it comes to avoiding a power outage.

Contact Jim’s Fire Safety Today

Now that you know how to prepare for a power outage, get in touch with us and make sure your business is as safe as possible during an emergency. At Jim’s Fire Safety, we are fire and electrical professionals. Let our team worry about safety while you get on with your business.

Did you find this article helpful? Make sure you share it with your mates. Awareness is the first step towards safety for every workplace.