A little bit of savvy and a few precautions will get you and your family safely through the cold of winter. Unless you live some place where the mercury never drops below freezing, you should prepare for the frigid possibilities.
Winter storms may knock out the power and cut you off for awhile. Lay in supplies of flashlights, batteries, nonperishable food, a manual can opener, portable radio, warm blankets or sleeping bags. Flashlights and battery operated lamps are safer than candles. If you take prescription medications, have an extra supply on hand.
Many people lose their heat source when the electricity is out, so plan for how you will stay warm. If it is a fireplace, have dry wood ready and accessible. Be extra cautious with kerosene and other portable heaters. Place them where they will not get knocked over, and at least three feet from flammable items. Make sure heaters and stoves are ventilated.
2. Winterize Your House
Your home should be well-insulated, with weather-stripping where needed. Insulate pipes that might freeze and drain sitting water from outdoor faucets.
3. Dress Warmly
Layers are the key to keeping warm. Wear several layers of loose-fitting garments, preferably cotton or wool.
4. Winterize the Car
In regions where the winters are fierce, have your car thoroughly serviced before winter arrives. Have the garage check everything from brakes to wiper blades. If you spend a considerable amount of time in your car, stock it with supplies, including chains, a flashlight, matches, extra clothes and blankets, jumper cables, food and water. Keep your gas tank full, to avoid water condensation.
Try to avoid driving in a blizzard. Watch for ice on the road and learn how to handle the car should you start to skid. Do not tempt fate. When driving conditions are horrendous, pull over and wait. If you are stranded in the car, tie a piece of cloth to the antenna. Run the engine 10 minutes per hour, but crack open a window and keep the exhaust pipe clear of snow.
6. Check on Your Neighbors
Call or visit people who are elderly or disabled and living alone.
7. Listen to the Weather Report
It helps to know if a big storm?s coming.
8. Snow blowers
Do not let children play nearby. They can be injured by flying rocks or chunks of ice.
9. Frostbite and Hypothermia
Learn the signs and symptoms and how to treat someone who is affected.
10. Avoid Overexertion