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USDA Offers Food Safety Tips For Power Outages

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The USDA is warning people without power to be careful about spoiled food.
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The USDA is warning people without power to be careful about spoiled food.

Millions of residents in the D.C. area are without power after Friday night's severe thunderstorm. And with temperatures expecting to reach 100 degrees Saturday, the USDA is warning those without power to be careful about spoiled food.

The department says food kept in the fridge will stay safe for about 4 hours if the fridge stays unopened. They're advising people to keep the doors closed as much as possible, and to discard any perishable food (e.g.. meat, poultry, fish, and eggs) that have been above 40 degrees F for over 2 hours. A full freezer will keep temperature for about 48 hours (24 hours if half-full). If freezers are not full, group packages together, which will keep them cool longer.

Power companies say some could be without for multiple days. For such instances, people should buy dry or block ice to keep the refrigerator as cold as possible. Fifty pounds of dry ice should keep a fully-stocked 18-cubic-feet freezer cold for two days.

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