Emergency power is a critical lifeline when disaster strikes. But experience has shown that fuels stored to operate the emergency standby diesel or gasoline generators are too often neglected.
In fact – when disaster strikes – these failures are quite predictable. During Hurricane Sandy for example, generator failures at three New York City hospitals forced mass patient evacuations in the midst of the storm. When Hurricane Irene hit Connecticut in August 2011, backup generators failed at the Johnson Memorial Medical Center in Stafford, with 41 patients evacuated.
Generator manufacturers estimate that more than half of all generator
failures in emergency situations are the result of fuel gone bad. When stored for months and years at a time, fuel will deteriorate and become unusable – disabling engines, plugging filtration systems, damaging engine components with excessive carbon – and in some cases – refusing to ignite. This neglect of stored fuel is one of the weakest links in disaster preparedness.
To preserve and insure against such deterioration and performance failure you should treat your fuel with an industrial grade fuel stabilizer like PRI-G or PRI-D. By adding a product like this to your fuel annually you can ensure that it will remain ready to use when you need it most. Having a generator and chainsaw that will work and avoiding long gas lines and fuel shortages will go a long way to make life easier in the trying times of a disaster.
Ralph Lewis & Curtis Morton
Power Research Inc.