With millions of Californians living without electricity during PG&E's public safety power shutoffs, food safety experts are warning residents to be careful about eating perishable food from their refrigerators and freezers.
In general, food in a refrigerator will stay safe for four hours if the door is kept closed. Food in a full freezer will keep for about 48 hours, while a half-full freezer will hold for around 24 hours.
Experts caution “when in doubt, throw it out.” But there are ways to make sure your food stays edible as long as possible. A few tips ...
Before a Power Shutoff
- Put ice packs or frozen containers of water in your fridge or freezer to help keep the temperature low. You can also buy dry ice or block ice to keep the food cold.
- Freeze items you don’t need right away, like meat, poultry and leftovers.
- Keep the food bunched together in your freezer to help it stay cold longer.