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PostPosted: Thu May 18, 2017 4:16 am 
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Hey everyone:

On Wednesday, May 17th, 2017 I experienced a power outage that lasted for around 4 hours. Here is the log that I kept during it. Remember, batteries are consumable items that need to be replaced on a regular schedule.
******************************************************************************************************************
16:30 05/17/2017 - I estimate that this is the beginning of the power outage.

16:43 05/17/2017 - The power went out about 10 or 15 minutes ago. I thought I should keep a log. Everything but the laptop, my smartphone, & the Wx radio just died. The landline is out. I called the maintenance man on my smartphone to ask him to call the power company & report the outage as I didn't have their number in my phone (failure). Right as the power went out, I heard the CD sirens started to blow & the squeal or brakes & a car horn sound. (it was so fucking cool!) The Wx had been going off for the past hour reporting thunderstorm warnings & a tornado watch for my county & all the surrounding counties. The red warning light is still on. My modem is out as my last UPS blew out sometime ago. I can see from my window that road traffic has picked. I am going to go out & get the mail.

17:02 05/17/2017 - More stuff from the VA. When I stepped out into the hallway, it was pitch black. I keep a little mag-lite on my keychain, so I was cool. Don't know about the rest of the people in this building. Traffic is backed up. It was a solid line of cars, all they way around. No one was moving. The rain stopped, so I opened the windows & am catching a bit of a breeze.

17:04 05/17/2017 - If this outage goes on for long enough, I will have to file a claim against my renter for the contents of my fridge, which includes four unopened vials of insulin. I have been off insulin for some time now, but the VA kept me well stocked. Last time I checked prices, It was almost $400.00 a vial. Then there is all of my food in there.

17:16 05/17/2017 - I just noticed that the red warning light on the Wx radio is out. The radio is functioning normally.

17:36 05/17/2017 - The batteries in the Wx radio, a Midland Wx300, just died. They were white eneloops. I they that were around 6 or 7 years old. I had back-up batteries in a kitchen drawer, so I am considering this to be a partial failure on my part & a reminder that anything can go wrong at any time.

17:41 05/17/2017 - The sun is out now. I hear sirens in the distance.

17:42 05/17/2017 - The battery on the laptop is @ 67% & the computer estimates that I have 3 hours, 41 minutes of battery life left. Does anyone know of a long-life laptop battery? Should I be using a pad for stuff like this?

17:53 05/17/2017 - The maintenance man stopped by & is giving everyone the phone number to report power outages. I called & got through to an automated system. The nice recorded voice told me that there are numerous outages in my area due to storm activity & there is no estimated time of power restoration. Other than the smoke/fire alarms, I cant remember the last time I replaced batteries in anything. Phone battery is at 70%.

18:02 05/17/2017 - The power has been out for 90 minutes so far.

18:39 05/17/2017 - There are car alarms going off to the north. The outage is now in it's second hour. Laptop battery is @ 52%. Estimated run time is @ 3 hours, 30 minutes. I am shutting down all extraneous programs to try & conserve power. The Wx radio has been quiet.

18:58 05/17/2017 - Much like this great nation, I need to spend money that I don't have, on 'infrastructure'...:)

19:12 05/17/2017 - There is a little girl out in the street, using some sort of handheld walkie-talkie. Interesting. Last I remember, it is supposed to rain for the next few days. The internet is convenient, until it goes out. I'm glad that I have my Midland. It saves the day.

19:20 05/17/2017 - The laptop battery is at 39% w/1 hour, 55 minutes left. I don't have any technical knowledge, but I feel that this laptop battery should be lasting longer. In my bug-in exercise, I had partial utilities. This log is not going to last that long. I am going to shut down the laptop, save power, & I will power up when something substantial happens, or when power is restored. WAIT OUT.

***From here I shut the laptop down & I continued on a hand written log***

19:45 05/17/2017 - The log continues! A little more rain pops up & people are running round like they are going to melt. More emergency traffic is headed West-bound.

19:58 05/17/2017 - I just saw a couple more emergency vehicles that I couldn't identify. they did not have lights or sirens activated.

20:20 05/17/2017 - I called the power outage number & they are reporting significant damage to lines & poles. They still have no estimate on power restoration. The nice automated lady went on to say that company crews & contract crews were working on the problem & that crews from surrounding areas have also been called in. As you will read in the next entry, she made it sound worse than it was, for me at least.

20:26 05/17/2017 - Six minutes later, power has been restored. One could feel the collective sigh of relief in the building. I know that I feel better. END OF LOG.

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PostPosted: Thu May 18, 2017 6:48 am 
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That is interesting.

Might I suggest upgrading to Static Hard Drive on your laptop when you get the chance/ funds? Half the people in the house have them now and they all note that their batteries run 12-18 hours depending upon what they are doing. Without the drive spinning you won't need a new battery as your consumption will drop by about 75%. It will also pay for itself over time with less power usage.

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PostPosted: Thu May 18, 2017 7:26 am 
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Stercutus wrote:
That is interesting. Might I suggest upgrading to Static Hard Drive on your laptop when you get the chance/ funds? Half the people in the house have them now and they all note that their batteries run 12-18 hours depending upon what they are doing. Without the drive spinning you won't need a new battery as your consumption will drop by about 75%. It will also pay for itself over time with less power usage.
I have one that I boogered the setup on. It should be in the 'new-ish' laptop by next month. I am also looking for a new battery for that laptop & a UPS. Hopefully I will have all three by autumn. :)

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PostPosted: Thu May 18, 2017 8:19 am 
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MPMalloy wrote:
Hey everyone:


17:42 05/17/2017 - The battery on the laptop is @ 67% & the computer estimates that I have 3 hours, 41 minutes of battery life left. Does anyone know of a long-life laptop battery? Should I be using a pad for stuff like this?



You can find aftermarket batteries for most laptops if they have been out a while. They typically add bulk to the laptop so if you use a bag or case to carry it you may need a new one.

Glad you made it through. No power lost for me but I had deck chairs hit my fence pretty hard in Dallas County. Guess I need to tie them down in the future.


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PostPosted: Thu May 18, 2017 8:26 am 
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Iowa_guy wrote:
MPMalloy wrote:
Hey everyone:


17:42 05/17/2017 - The battery on the laptop is @ 67% & the computer estimates that I have 3 hours, 41 minutes of battery life left. Does anyone know of a long-life laptop battery? Should I be using a pad for stuff like this?



You can find aftermarket batteries for most laptops if they have been out a while. They typically add bulk to the laptop so if you use a bag or case to carry it you may need a new one.

Glad you made it through. No power lost for me but I had deck chairs hit my fence pretty hard in Dallas County. Guess I need to tie them down in the future.
It seemed to last for just a few minutes, maybe it was one of those straight-line wind type of thunderstorms. It all happened at once here in DSM.

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PostPosted: Thu May 18, 2017 9:21 am 
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MPMalloy wrote:
Iowa_guy wrote:
MPMalloy wrote:
Hey everyone:


17:42 05/17/2017 - The battery on the laptop is @ 67% & the computer estimates that I have 3 hours, 41 minutes of battery life left. Does anyone know of a long-life laptop battery? Should I be using a pad for stuff like this?



You can find aftermarket batteries for most laptops if they have been out a while. They typically add bulk to the laptop so if you use a bag or case to carry it you may need a new one.

Glad you made it through. No power lost for me but I had deck chairs hit my fence pretty hard in Dallas County. Guess I need to tie them down in the future.
It seemed to last for just a few minutes, maybe it was one of those straight-line wind type of thunderstorms. It all happened at once here in DSM.


Derecho....60-70mph winds that stretch across a few hundred miles. My mother lost the roof of her house east of Marshalltown due to it back in 2011. Big reason they hit the sirens now for winds. People grumble about it but does it matter if your house gets trashed by a twister or straight-line winds?


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PostPosted: Thu May 18, 2017 12:26 pm 
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Iowa_guy wrote:
MPMalloy wrote:
Iowa_guy wrote:
MPMalloy wrote:
Hey everyone:


17:42 05/17/2017 - The battery on the laptop is @ 67% & the computer estimates that I have 3 hours, 41 minutes of battery life left. Does anyone know of a long-life laptop battery? Should I be using a pad for stuff like this?



You can find aftermarket batteries for most laptops if they have been out a while. They typically add bulk to the laptop so if you use a bag or case to carry it you may need a new one.

Glad you made it through. No power lost for me but I had deck chairs hit my fence pretty hard in Dallas County. Guess I need to tie them down in the future.
It seemed to last for just a few minutes, maybe it was one of those straight-line wind type of thunderstorms. It all happened at once here in DSM.


Derecho....60-70mph winds that stretch across a few hundred miles. My mother lost the roof of her house east of Marshalltown due to it back in 2011. Big reason they hit the sirens now for winds. People grumble about it but does it matter if your house gets trashed by a twister or straight-line winds?
That makes sense. On my way to the range this morning the traffic lights were still out at the intersection just East of my building and the remains of a tree were still blocking the left lane of E. 15th St. Everything else looked OK.

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