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Food Safety in an Emergency

Practicing safe food-handling is an important part of everyday life, but is especially important in emergency situations such as a flood, tornado, fire, water interruption or power outage.  Be sure to carefully inspect all food items and do not eat any food you think may not be safe. Spoiled food may not look contaminated. Remember, when in doubt, throw it out.  

For additional information please see the Ohio Department of Health factsheets (printable versions) and links to external websites below:   

Fact Sheets:

Food Service Operation Fact Sheets

Food Safety Fact Sheets for Consumers


    Emergency Preparedness (USDA)
     Provides materials, including videos and podcasts, on ensuring food safety during emergencies.

    Food and Water Safety During Hurricanes, Power Outages, and Floods (FDA)
     Proper safety precautions to keep food and water safe.

    Keep Food and Water Safe After a Disaster or Emergency (CDC)
     Includes tips for making water safe to drink and storing food.

    Food, Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene Information for Use Before and After a Disaster or Emergency (CDC)

    Chart: Refrigerated Food (foodsafety.gov)
     Is food in the refrigerator safe during a power outage? Use this chart to find out.

    Chart: Frozen Food (foodsafety.gov)
     Is thawed or partially thawed food in the freezer safe to eat? Use this chart as a guide.