Natural Disaster Preparedness – Snowstorm/Blizzard
Preparedness for snowstorms and blizzards is crucial to ensure your safety and well-being during extreme winter weather. Here are steps to take before, during, and after a snowstorm or blizzard:
Before the Snowstorm/Blizzard
Monitor weather forecasts from reliable sources to be aware of upcoming snowstorms or blizzards.
Sign up for weather alerts and notifications.
Stock Up on Essentials:
Ensure you have an ample supply of food, water, medications, and other essential supplies to last for several days.
Have a backup source of heat, such as a generator, if you rely on electric heating.
Prepare an Emergency Kit:
Include warm clothing, blankets, flashlights, batteries, a first aid kit, a battery-powered radio, and other emergency supplies.
Insulate Your Home:
Caulk and weather-strip windows and doors to prevent drafts and heat loss.
Insulate pipes to prevent them from freezing and bursting.
Clear walkways, driveways, and entrances of snow and ice to prevent accidents and facilitate access during and after the storm.
Trim Trees and Secure Outdoor Items:
Trim tree branches that could break under heavy snow and damage property.
Secure outdoor items that could be blown around or damaged by strong winds.
During the Snowstorm/Blizzard:
Stay inside during the storm to avoid exposure to cold temperatures, strong winds, and blowing snow.
Avoid driving or going outside unless necessary.
If you must travel, inform someone of your route and expected arrival time.
Wear multiple layers of warm clothing, including a hat and gloves, to prevent hypothermia.
Keep rooms well-heated and use blankets if necessary.
Emergency Heat Sources:
Use emergency heat sources, such as fireplaces, wood stoves, or space heaters, safely and according to manufacturer’s instructions.
After the Snowstorm/Blizzard
Check for Damage:
Inspect your home and property for any damage caused by the storm, such as roof leaks or fallen trees.
Clear Snow Safely:
Clear snow from walkways and driveways but do so safely to prevent overexertion or injury. Take breaks and avoid shoveling if you have health conditions that could be worsened by physical activity.
Check on neighbors, especially the elderly or those with limited mobility, to ensure their safety and help if needed.
Continue to monitor updates and weather forecasts to be aware of any follow-up storms or changing conditions.
Document any storm-related damage with photographs for insurance claims.
Stay Cautious on the Roads:
Even after the snowstorm ends, roads and sidewalks may remain icy and slippery. Exercise caution while driving and walking.
Replenish your emergency supplies and restock any items that were used during the storm.
By being well-prepared and taking appropriate precautions, you can navigate snowstorms and blizzards with greater safety and confidence.