^ That is actually a key condition cpttango. I used to live in a rental on the same circuit as a Safeway, which is a major accounts style grocery store on the West Coast for you in the Midwest/East.
We specifically rented the place based on the circuit information since I worked for the power company at the time. That circuit was one of the FIRST brought back on line EVERYTIME there was a power outage.
One of the key reasons was that circuit had a TON
of residential units on it ( condos, apartments and small neighborhoods ) and Safeway has a Corporate/Major Account with the provider, PSE, to ensure that they are up and running in the time of need.
People spend, approximately, 250% what they would normally spend on ANY item in the state of a "crisis", according to across the board studies in our region. Both the utility and Safeway KNOW
that, so they work together to INSURE that the store stays open.
When we moved, I pulled the circuit information and it was not good. There are NO major stores, no hospitals and no multiple dwelling units ( MDU's ). I knew we were going to be hung out to dry in the event of a serious power outage.
The key is, how many people are on your circuit? The power service provider HAS to answer that question for you according to FEDERAL LAW. So call them, bug them until you find out. If the number is something like 577, you need to consider a generator, or else you might find yourself WITHOUT POWER for a week like the good cpttango here....
Anyone with questions can always PM me, but calling your service provider is the best way to start. They are REQUIRED to report, to the feds, their circuit reliability and the number of "subscribers" on the circuit that you are on.
If the number is low, and you can't see a hospital, or a health care facility isn't on your circuit, I would definitely RECOMMEND
a generator, either wired in or portable, for your house....