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Winter Weather Checklists

Winter Weather Checklistswinterstormpic

Stock up on emergency supplies for communication, food, safety, heating, and vehicles in case a storm hits.

 

Communication Checklist

Make sure you have at least one of the following in case there is a power failure:

  • Cell phone, portable charger, and extra batteries.
  • Battery-powered radio, with extra batteries, for listening to local emergency instructions

 

Heating Checklist

  • Turning on the stove for heat is not safe; have at least one of the following heat sources in case the power goes out:
  • Extra blankets, sleeping bags, and warm winter coats
  • Fireplace with plenty of dry firewood or a gas log fireplace
  • Portable space heaters or kerosene heaters
  • Check with your local fire department to make sure that kerosene heaters are legal in your area.
  • Use electric space heaters with automatic shut-off switches and non-glowing elements.
  • Never place a space heater on top of furniture or near water.
  • Never leave children unattended near a space heater.
  • Keep heat sources at least 3 feet away from furniture and drapes.
  • Have the following safety equipment:
  • Chemical fire extinguisher
  • Smoke alarm in working order (Check prior to winter storm season and change batteries, if needed.)
  • Carbon monoxide detector (Check prior to winter storm season and change batteries, if needed.)
  • Never use an electric generator indoors, inside the garage, or near the air intake of your home because of the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.
  • Do not use the generator or appliances if they are wet.
  • Do not store gasoline indoors where the fumes could ignite.
  • Use individual heavy-duty, outdoor-rated cords to plug in other appliances.

 

Cooking and Lighting Checklist

  • Use battery-powered flashlights or lanterns.
  • Never use charcoal grills or portable gas camp stoves indoors. The fumes are deadly.
  • Avoid using candles as these can lead to house fires.
  • If you do use candles, never leave lit candles alone.

 

Food and Safety Checklist

  • Have a week’s worth of food and safety supplies. If you live far from other people, have more supplies on hand.
  • Make sure you have the following supplies:
  • Drinking water
  • Canned/no-cook food (bread, crackers, dried fruits)
  • Non-electric can opener
  • Baby food and formula (if baby in the household)
  • Prescription drugs and other medicine
  • First-aid kit
  • Rock-salt to melt ice on walkways
  • Supply of cat litter or bag of sand to add traction on walkways
  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • Battery-powered lamps or lanterns (To prevent the risk of fire, avoid using candles.)

 

Water Checklist

  • Keep a water supply. Extreme cold can cause water pipes in your home to freeze and sometimes break.
  • Leave all water taps slightly open so they drip continuously.
  • Keep the indoor temperature warm.
  • Allow more heated air near pipes. Open kitchen cabinet doors under the kitchen sink.
  • If your pipes do freeze, do not thaw them with a torch. Thaw the pipes slowly with warm air from an electric hair dryer.
  • If you cannot thaw your pipes, or if the pipes have broken open, use bottled water or get water from a neighbor’s home.
  • Fill the bathtub or have bottled water on hand.
  • In an emergency, if no other water is available, snow can be melted for water. Bringing water to a rolling boil for one minute will kill most germs but won’t get rid of chemicals sometimes found in snow.

 

Car and Emergency Checklist

  • Minimize travel, but if travel is necessary, keep the following in your vehicle:
  • Cell phone, portable charger, and extra batteries
  • Shovel
  • Windshield scraper
  • Battery-powered radio with extra batteries
  • Flashlight with extra batteries
  • Water
  • Snack food
  • Extra hats, coats, and mittens
  • Blankets
  • Chains or rope
  • Tire chains
  • Canned compressed air with sealant for emergency tire repair
  • Road salt and sand
  • Booster cables
  • Emergency flares
  • Bright colored flag or help signs
  • First aid kit
  • Tool kit
  • Road maps
  • Compass
  • Waterproof matches and a can to melt snow for water
  • Paper towels