If you or someone at your home relies on life support equipment, tell your energy provider – either the retailer or distributor – as soon as possible. They will send you a form that you and your doctor need to fill out. Once you've completed the form, send it back to your retailer or distributor.
This form tells them someone at your home needs life support equipment and they must not disconnect you for any reason, or give you at least 4 days' notice of a planned interruption to your energy supply so you can prepare for the interruption.
What is life support equipment?
Life support equipment is any of the following:
- an oxygen concentrator
- an intermittent peritoneal dialysis machine
- a kidney dialysis machine
- a chronic positive airways pressure respirator
- crigler najjar syndrome phototherapy equipment
- a ventilator for life support
- any other equipment that a doctor says is needed for life support.
If you have any questions about the equipment you or someone in your home uses and whether it is life support equipment, talk to your doctor.
Have a plan
Your power can go out without warning. You need to be ready and have a plan in case this happens. Think about:
- where you will go
- how you will get there and how you will transport your equipment
- how you will contact people if the power goes out – remember, some phones (cordless) only work with electricity
- who you will call. Make a list that includes the phone numbers for your doctor, the nearest hospital and someone who can help you. Keep it somewhere you can find it quickly
- keep backup equipment fully charged and ready to go
- if necessary, where you can get access to a temporary generator (ask your energy provider if they can provide you with one).
Keep a copy of your plan handy and tell your retailer and distributor if your details change, like your address or phone number.