A blackout can mean an interruption of traffic or other essential services.

In the United States, some people can be fined for failing to use the phone when a blackout is in effect, according to the Federal Communications Commission.

Blackouts can be severe for people who are homeless, have health issues, or are disabled, and are often caused by natural disasters, like hurricanes.

In some states, people who don’t get electricity during a blackout can lose their homes, even if their electricity provider is working.

Blackout restrictions can be imposed even if the blackout isn’t causing significant problems.

If you need assistance, call the National Disaster Emergency Center at 1-800-656-7386.