SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) — Evacuating during a tropical storm or hurricane can be stressful. One thing you shouldn’t have to worry about is the food in your freezer. The power could go out and your frozen food could completely defrost. You may not know if this happens if the power comes back on and refreezes your food. One way to check to see if your food is still safe to eat is to use a quarter.


All you need is a clear glass, water, and a quarter. This is a simple and easy way to check on your food once you return home if you are wondering if your frozen food has gone bad.

First, freeze the water in the glass. After the water is completely frozen, put the quarter on top of the frozen water. Place the cup back into the freezer. This is where it will stay until you return to check on your food.

Here is how to check if your food is still safe to eat – look at where the quarter is in the cup:

QUARTER IS STILL ON TOP – your food is still safe. The power most likely did not go out and your food remained frozen.

QUARTER IS IN THE MIDDLE – your food is likely still okay but the power did go out at some point. The power was out long enough for some of the ice in the cup to melt, but not completely. If you are still unsure about it, the best option is to just throw your food away.

QUARTER IS AT THE BOTTOM – your food is not safe to eat. The power went out long enough for the ice to completely melt and the quarter to sink to the bottom of the cup. Your food was unfrozen at some point and is now unsafe to eat.

HELPFUL TIP: If you plan on staying and the power does go out, refrain from opening up your freezer. If you do open it, you are allowing for all the cold air to rush out and allow for your food to spoil more quickly.

To help prepare you for hurricane season, Storm Team 3 will be presenting Storm Watch on June 5th from 9 – 10 am on WSAV! Tune in to learn why the average number of storms per year is going up, why the season will start earlier, how 2020 hurricane season was extremely record breaking & so much more!