Spring is almost upon us and with it come storms strong enough to knock the power out. Did you know that your refrigerator and freezer can help you avoid food poisoning even when the power goes out? Here are some tips to keep in mind in case of an emergency.\nBe Prepared for a Power Outage\n\n\nKeep appliance thermometers in the refrigerator and freezer. Safe temperatures are 40\u00b0F or lower in the refrigerator and 0\u00b0F or lower in the freezer.\nIf severe storm warnings are in effect, fill 1-quart plastic bags with water, and freeze them to help keep food cold. They will fit around items requiring refrigeration and will also prevent puddles of water from developing as the ice melts.\nHave enough ready-to-eat-food that does not require cooking or cooling to last a few days.\n\nDuring a power outage\n\nKeep the refrigerator and freezer doors closed as much as possible\n\nA refrigerator will keep food cold for four hours if the door is kept shut.\nA full freezer will keep its temperature for 48 hours.\n\n\n\n\nPlace meat and poultry on a tray so that their juices do not get on other foods if they begin to thaw.\nBuy block or dry ice to keep appliances as cold as possible.\n\nAfter a power outage\n\nCheck the temperature of your refrigerator and freezer. Throw out any perishable food that has been above 40\u00b0F for two hours or more. This includes:\n\nMeat\nPoultry\nSeafood\nEggs\nLeftovers\n\n\n\n\nThrow out any food that has an unusual texture, color, odor, or feels warm to the touch.\nCheck for ice crystals on frozen food. Food that still contains ice crystals or is 40\u00b0 or below can safely be refrozen.