--Before The Storm
--If you get Caught
Keeping Safe By
Preparing Before The Storm Strikes
Preparations before the storm are the
most important safety factors in the winter season to keep you and your
family safe. As snow, reduced visibility and other climatic variables
occur in the winter, this prevents you from being able to move around to
get supplies. Thus making sure you have the necessary supplies and tools
is something that should be done before the storm arrives. Here is
a basic list of preparations that should be taken.
At home and at work...
Primary concerns are the potential loss of heat, power, telephone service, and a shortage of supplies if storm
conditions continue for more than a day.
--Flashlight and extra
candle holders and candles;
--Battery-powered Weather Radio and portable radio to
receive emergency information. These may be your only links to the
--Extra food and water. High energy food, such as dried fruit or candy, and food requiring no cooking or refrigeration is
--Extra medicine and baby
--Heating fuel. Fuel carriers may not reach you for days after a severe winter
--Emergency heating source, such as a fireplace, wood stove, space heater,
--Learn to use properly to prevent a
--Fire extinguisher and smoke
--Test units regularly to ensure they are working
In cars and trucks...
Plan your travel and check the latest weather reports to avoid the storm!
If you don't have to go, don't.
1) Fully check and winterize your vehicle before the winter season begins.
--Winterize your car before winter arrives by checking the following:
Antifreeze - Keep engine coolant at the proper levels as this
against freezing and corrosion. Change the coolant as recommended by the
Battery - Test to make sure it is in good working condition
ample power for cold winter starts.
Brakes - Worn brakes require longer stopping distances and
can pull the
car to one side when stopping. A mechanic can check your brakes and
make necessary repairs.
Emergency Supplies - At a minimum, your car should be
equipped with a
flashlight, blanket, sand or salt and a snow/ice scraper.
Exhaust System - Fumes from a leaky exhaust system can
fatal. Remember, never run the motor in your garage.
Heater and Defroster - In proper working condition, these
passengers comfortable and the windshield free of ice and condensation.
Oil - Change your oil using a winter grade oil for easier
Tires - Worn tires lose their grip on slippery roads. Make
sure your tires
are properly inflated and have sufficient tread. All-weather tires or snow
tires are recommended for most areas.
Wipers and Windshield Fluid - Ensure good visibility by
wiper blades or installing winter blades. Keep washer reservoir filled with
specially formulated antifreeze solution for windshields.
--Keep your car clean. Chemicals, salt and gravel used for de-icing roads can be
extremely corrosive to your car. Clean regularly with plain water to reduce the harmful
effects of these agents.
2) Carry a WINTER STORM SURVIVAL KIT in Your Vehicle
--flashlight with extra batteries;
--high-calorie, non-perishable food;
--extra clothing to keep
dry (including hat, socks and mitts, not gloves);
--a large empty can and plastic cover with tissues and paper towels for
--a smaller can and water-proof matches to melt snow for drinking;
--sack of sand (or cat litter);
--windshield scraper and brush;
container with water;
--brightly colored cloth to use as a flag;
--compass and road
--keep your gas tank near full to avoid ice in the tank and fuel lines.
3) If you have to drive in adverse conditions, take the following
--Always travel during daylight and, if possible, take at least one other person.
Try not to travel alone.
--Let someone know your timetable and primary and alternate
routes and plan long trips carefully.
a cell phone/Ham radio/CB for emergency purposes if you become
stuck/broke down or in trouble.
--Listen to the radio, call the state highway patrol for the latest road
conditions and use road condition information available on this site.
--Dress warmly. Wear layers of loose-fitting, layered, lightweight clothing.
--Carry food and water. Store a supply of high energy "munchies" and several bottles of water.
--Allow extra time to reach your destination when driving on slick winter roads. Slow
down and avoid making sudden moves - no fast turns, no quick acceleration and no hard
breaking. If you don't have time to slow down, when will you have time for an accident?
--Bridges and overpasses freeze before road surfaces. Freezing air circulating above and
below the bridge causes ice to form more rapidly than on a surface that has freezing air
above and warmer ground below.
--Allow additional stopping distance on any road that is not dry by doubling the
Four-Second Rule. This rule teaches new drivers safe driving distances - when the rear
bumper of the car ahead passes any designated spot, make sure you reach the same spot in
four seconds or more. Doubling or even tripling this safety measure is especially wise
during winter driving but can be practiced throughout the year.
--Visibility is an important factor for safe driving during a winter storm. Keep your
lights on and clear the windshield of accumulations of ice and snow if necessary.
--Know what to do if you skid on ice or get stuck in snow. Counter steer to
regain control in a skid. Steer the car in the same direction that the rear wheels are
sliding. If the rear wheels slide to the right, turn the front wheels right and vice
versa. Do not spin your wheels when stuck on ice or in snow. Instead, remove snow from the
area around the tire, if necessary, and spread sand or salt under the drive wheel to
On the farm...
--Move animals to sheltered areas. Shelter belts, properly laid out and oriented, are better protection for cattle than confining shelters, such as sheds.
--Haul extra feed to nearby feeding areas.
--Have a water supply available. Most animal deaths in winter storms are from dehydration.