With Winter and the holiday travel season approaching, now is the time to prepare yourself, your vehicle, and your home for the cold weather.
Vehicle Preparedness and Safety
Plan your travel and check the latest forecasts. Avoid winter storms whenever possible.
Fully check and winterize your vehicle before starting your travel.
Let someone know your timetable and your primary and alternate travel routes.
Keep your gas tank near full to prevent ice from forming in the fuel lines.
If you encounter sleet or freezing rain, drive extremely cautiously. Even 4-wheel drive vehicles will have difficulty on icy roads.
If you are planning travel into an area which experiences significant winter storms, carry a winter storm survival kit including blankets, flashlight, high-calorie snack foods, sand, tow rope, booster cables, and a water container.
Dressing for the Weather
Wear loose-fitting, lightweight clothing in several layers.
Outer garments should be tightly-woven and water-repellant.
Wear a hat. Nearly half of your body heat loss is from the top of your head.
Wear gloves or mittens (mittens which are snug at the wrist are better than gloves).
Try to stay dry. Remove layers of clothing to prevent perspiration and subsequent chill.
Preparing Your Home
The primary concerns are the potential loss of power and telephone service. If winter weather conditions last for more than a day, then a shortage of supplies may also be a concern.
Have a flashlight and extra batteries available. Don’t use candles if the electricity goes out.
Use a battery-powered NOAA Weather Radio and a portable radio to receive emergency information.
If you have a fireplace or wood stove, make sure you have a good supply of firewood. Learn to use any emergency heating sources properly, to prevent a fire.
Keep extra medicine, baby items, and first-aid supplies on hand.
Close off unneeded rooms and place towels or rags in cracks under the doors.