Public Health Officials Offer Food Safety Tips

Irene #055 – 12 noon

Sunday, August 28, 2011

The Virginia Beach Department of Public Health strongly advises all Virginia Beach residents experiencing power outages to use extreme care when consuming refrigerated and frozen perishable foods.  When foods, such as meats and dairy products, are held at temperatures greater than 41 degrees F. for more than a few hours, microorganisms may multiply, placing you and your family at risk for a food-borne illness.


Discard any potentially hazardous food that has exceeded 41 degrees F. for greater than two hours.  Once frozen food has thawed, remaining at less than 41 degrees F., it must be cooked and eaten immediately.  Discard leftovers if you cannot maintain the food at a safe temperature.  Keep a food thermometer on hand to monitor these important temperatures.


Never use a gas or charcoal grill to cook indoors!  This may release poisonous gases such as carbon monoxide, causing illness or death.


You can use your fireplace, candle warmers, chafing dishes and fondue pots to heat food.  Canned foods can be eaten directly from the can.

For the most up-to-date information regarding Hurricane Irene citizens are urged to stay tuned to local television and radio stations as well as the outlets listed below:

  • City’s VBTV Channels: Cox Cable 46, 47 & 48 and Verizon Cable 45, 46 & 47 will display emergency information including our City operational status and facilities closure notices
  • Television Channels: WTKR 3, WAVY 10 and WVEC 13
  • Local radio stations
  • Social Media Sites:
  • Citizen Services: 311 (landlines within City limits) or 385-3111; provides the City’s current operating condition status and facilities closure notices; please do not call 911 unless you have an emergency


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