Food safety after a power outage - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, Florida-

Food safety after a power outage

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When the threat of a power outage from a hurricane is imminent, serious consideration must be taken to the food in your refrigerator.

The main question you need to ask is: what's safe to eat?

The answer: Don't take chances. The last thing you want to do is get yourself or your family sick after a hurricane.

Consider the following precautions if you have a power outage lasting for more than a day:

* Throw out everything in your fridge. Besides meat, that means condiments, jellies, sauces, and whatever was in your refrigerator before the power outage.
* Chicken and other meats have a short shelf life in the fridge. Consume it within three days, or throw it out.
* When it comes to your freezer, take the same precautions.
* If an item in your freezer seems warm, throw it out. If it is still cold in the middle, consume it immediately (make sure it is cooked all the way through).
* Since your fridge or freezer can smell after a power outage, cleaning becomes very important. There are three different ways to clean out your fridge or freezer

o Scrub with a combination of baking soda and water.
o For tougher odors, try scrubbing with vinegar and water.
o You may also want to try placing a charcoal briquette in your fridge and then close the door. This will remove most odors.

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