Winter Preparedness

One of the primary concerns during the winter is the weather’s ability to knock out heat, power and communication services to your home sometimes for days at a time.    Communication lines can be cut off, and access to emergency and medical services may be severely limited once extreme weather hits a region. Know the terms used to describe changing winter weather conditions and what actions to take.

Winter Weather Advisory:

Winter weather conditions are expected to cause significant inconveniences and may be hazardous. When caution is used, these situations should not be life threatening.

Winter Storm Watch:
Winter storm conditions are possible within the next 36 to 48 hours. People in a watch area should review their winter storm plans and stay informed about weather conditions.

Winter Storm Warning:
Life-threatening, severe winter conditions have begun or will begin within 24 hours. People in a warning area should take precau-tions immediately.
Heavy snowfall and extreme cold can immobilize an entire region. It’s important to know what to do before, during, and after a winter storm:
Before the next winter storm approaches, add the following supplies to your emergency kit:
●Rock salt or more environ-mentally safe products to melt ice on walkways.
●Sand to improve traction.
●Snow shovels and other snow removal equipment.
●Sufficient heating fuel. You may become isolated in your home and regular fuel sources may be cut off. Store a good supply of dry, seasoned wood for your fireplace or wood-burning stove.
●Adequate clothing and blankets to keep you warm.
●Minimize travel. If travel is necessary, (link→) keep a disaster supplies kit your vehicle.
•Bring pets/companion animals inside during winter weather. Move other animals or livestock to sheltered areas with non-frozen drinking water.
•Create or update your Family Communications Plan. Your family may not be together when disaster strikes, so it is important to know how you will contact one another, how you will get back together and what you will do in case of an emergency.
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