Dover, Ohio (WJER) - Tuscarawas County Health Department officials say people who haven’t had power since Sunday are out of luck when it comes to saving food still in their refrigerators.
Environmental Health Director Caroline Terakedis says food only stays good for four to six hours in a non-powered refrigerator. She says after that, it should be thrown away unless it’s kept at 41 degrees or lower.
“Once you get in that danger zone of above 41 degrees, you’re looking at exponential bacteria growth and chances that people could get very, very sick from bacteria growing on that food,” she says.
Terakedis says residents can move their food somewhere colder, even outside.
“As long as you’re keeping it 41 degrees or below and you’re also protecting it from outside contamination like your neighbors' pets and those kinds of things,” she says.
Terakedis says frozen food has a longer life – about 24 hours before it starts to thaw in a non-powered freezer.