COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - Severe storms come with the looming threat of power outages. A potential that, in the winter, could leave families in need of alternate lights and heat.
Frank Comer with Wynnton Hardware tells us the devices can be "kerosene or it could be wood as you think about it. We would also use propane as well natural gas."
Comer says the best alternate heating sources for those without power are the natural gas heater and the kerosene heater. Both devices, they say hardware stores across the Chattahoochee Valley are running low on.
Lowe's, Wal Mart, Home Depot and Wynnton Hardware all report being out of heaters. Comer says that's because a lot of people pre-ordered the devices long before winter hit.
"We will put in orders for our heaters, for our winter products typically in June, July and August," Comer adds. "So, a lot of those manufacturers, whether they're overseas or whether they're here in the United States, will actually manufacture based on the orders that they have and they may have a little additional supply."
Comer claims that an additional supply has already been sold, and with only a few weeks left in Winter, he says manufacturers aren't looking to stock shelves with more winter products.
While Comer cannot offer customers heaters, he does offer this advice for them in the wake of the winter weather.
"You need to think about is there someone I can go and stay with or is there someone who can come and stay with me, you know," he warns. "That I've got sources of heat and lighting and food."
If you are using a space heater, make sure you use it safely. Space heaters account for 45 percent of all house fires in the U.S.
Experts say do not leave them on overnight, keep them away from flammable items and always place them on balanced surfaces.