Winter storms have a thousand ways of interrupting dinner. Power outages are common as ice builds up on power lines. Car slide offs regularly take out transformers. Deep snow and ice can either keep you or supply trucks from getting to the store, and hazardous conditions and dangerously low temperatures make it a bad idea to even try. Forty nine of the 50 U.S. states experience winter storms. Here are some winter safety tips to help you get prepared if you live in one of those 49 states.
Winter safety tips
Here are some tips for staying safe in winter weather:
1. Make sure you have a backup heating source such as a wood burning fireplace or fuel heater. Pellet stoves are a great alternative as well. I have had one for 5 winters now. They are very efficient and cheap to run. I pay $4.39 for a 40lb bag of wood pellets. You will need to have a generator to run the electric fan motor though. Having a backup generator is a good idea as well. It will run your refrigerator and lights when the power goes out. Otherwise, you will need candles, flashlights, or kerosene lamps for light.
2. Make a family communications plan in case you aren’t all together when the storm hits. This will prevent chaos and worry as family members start to worry about other members safety during the storm. Having a solar powered cell phone charger as part of your bug out bag will ensure your cell phone has a charge at all times.
3. Take it easy shoveling snow. Heart attacks from over exertion is a leading cause of death in the winter. Take a break when necessary. The snow is not going to go anywhere. Have another family member help to clear the snow. Take turns and rest while the other person is shoveling.
4. If you have to go outside, keep dry as wet clothing loses all of it’s insulating properties. Multiple layered clothing will bring the most warmth.
5. If your pipes freeze remove any insulation and wrap pipes in towels or rags. Open faucets wide and pour hot water over the pipes, starting where they were most exposed. It is best to leave a faucet or two lightly running to prevent the pipes from freezing in the first place.
6. Of course, make sure you have at least 3 days of emergency food and water for your entire household. Seven days worth would be better. A months worth would be great. A months worth of freeze dried food for one person can cost as little as $99.00. It will be good for 25 years!
7. If you get caught driving outside during a storm, and have a breakdown or slide off the road, make sure your car bug out bag is in your car and ready to use. It could save you or your family members’ life.
Winter storm preparedness
Preparing for the inevitable storm will keep you and your family safe this winter. The little amount of time, energy and money you spend preparing will pay off big!
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