Preparing for Winter Weather

Photo credit: Ready.gov
Photo credit: Ready.gov

The National Weather Service refers to winter storms as the “deceptive killers” because most deaths are indirectly related to the storm.

People are injured or killed in traffic accidents on icy roads, or suffer from hypothermia due to prolonged exposure to the cold. Another major danger associated with winter storms is their ability to knock out heat, power and communications, sometimes for days at a time.

Stay prepared this winter season!

Get an emergency supply kit that includes enough provisions for you and your family to live on for a minimum of three days. In your emergency kit you can include: 

  • Water (one gallon per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation)
  • Food (at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food)
  • Battery-powered radio and extra batteries
  • First aid kit

If you have no heat, close off unneeded rooms, stuff towels or rags in the cracks under doors and cover windows at night.

Cover pipes with insulation or newspapers and plastic. Allow faucets to drip a little during cold weather to avoid freezing.

Learn how to shut off water valves in case a pipe bursts. If the pipes freeze, remove any insulation or layers of newspapers and wrap pipes in rags. Completely open all faucets and pour hot water over the pipes, starting where they were most exposed to the cold (or where the cold was most likely to penetrate).

Use extreme caution when using alternative heating sources. Refuel kerosene heaters outside and keep them at least three feet from flammable objects. Also, when using kerosene heaters, be sure to maintain ventilation to avoid build-up of toxic fumes. Visit www.befiresafepa.com for more information.

Wear layers of loose-fitting, lightweight, warm clothing. Several layers of lightweight clothing will keep you warmer than a single heavy coat. Wear gloves (or mittens) and a hat to help prevent loss of body heat.

Information included in this article is from ReadyPA

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