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A winter storm poses a multifaceted threat. It can bring ice, freezing rain, high winds, extreme cold, and heavy snowfall.
They can result in fallen trees, treacherous roadways, and sidewalks, prolonged power outages, disruptions in public transportation, and closures of schools and childcare facilities.
Furthermore, these storms elevate the risk of heart attacks, carbon monoxide poisoning, frostbite, hypothermia, and car accidents.
6 Steps to Help You Prepare for the Storm Season
Since the cold storm season is underway, you must be well-prepared to safeguard yourself, your family, and your residence. Below are proactive measures to consider before the onset of such harsh weather conditions.
1. Take Precautions When You Hear Winter Storm Warnings
Take precautions if you hear these warning terms on the news:
This warning indicates that severe, life-threatening winter conditions have commenced or will start within 24 hours. It’s essential to be prepared and stay safe.
Pay attention to this when mentioned, as it represents how cold people and animals feel when exposed to the elements. Higher winds can rapidly reduce your body temperature, making you feel much colder than the actual temperature. Be cautious in these conditions.
If you hear this term, it implies that winter snowstorm conditions may be possible in the next two to five days. Stay tuned to local media for updates and remain vigilant.
When the authorities issue this warning, it signifies that storm conditions could occur within the next 36 – 48 hours. Use this time to review and finalize your storm plans while staying informed about weather updates.
Winter Weather Advisory
This warning suggests that winter weather conditions are expected, which may lead to significant inconveniences and potential hazards. While not life-threatening, exercise caution and take necessary precautions.
In all cases, it’s crucial to heed these warnings and be prepared for severe weather conditions to ensure your and your family’s safety.
2. Prepare Your Food Supplies
In anticipation of a winter storm coming, ensuring your food provisions are well-stocked is crucial. Staying indoors and avoiding travel is essential during these conditions, so having an adequately supplied pantry is paramount.
It’s advisable to stock up on non-perishable items that can sustain you for at least three days to mitigate concerns about food spoilage in case of a power outage.
Consider including the following items in your pre-storm food stash—oats, rice barley, bread, honey, peanut butter, instant coffee, hot cocoa, soups, canned goods, granola bars, and crackers.
Add some non-refrigerated fruits, such as oranges, apples, or bananas, and a selection of fresh vegetables. Remember to purchase food supplies for your pets if you have them.
3. Stock Up on Bottled Water
When winter storms are coming, prioritize having ample bottled water, especially in the event of frozen pipes that may disrupt your access to tap water. Besides drinking, you may need water for essential tasks such as teeth brushing, dishwashing, toilet flushing, and bathing.
To ensure you’re well-prepared, consider filling your bathtub and containers like jugs and bottles with water before the storm arrives.
Plan to have a minimum of three gallons of water per person in your household. Pay attention to the water.
4. Ensure an Adequate Supply of Medications and Hygiene Essentials
To prepare for winter storms, ensure you’ve refilled all your prescription medications and have enough to last for at least three days and, ideally, a week to err on the side of caution.
This foresight will spare you the need to venture out to the pharmacy when road conditions are hazardous. Additionally, it’s prudent to stock up on essential hygiene items, including toothpaste, tampons, toilet paper, and diapers.
Consider packing moist towelettes, which can prove invaluable during a water shortage. Being well-prepared in these areas will improve your comfort and well-being during the storm. Also, ensure you have enough to keep your pets hydrated.
5. Create an Emergency Kit
Before a winter snowstorm strikes, ensure easy access to essential emergency items. It’s wise to waterproof things that water can damage by placing them in airtight, waterproof plastic bags.
Consider packing everything in one or two easily portable suitcases if you need to evacuate quickly. Your emergency kit should include:
- Battery-powered or hand-crank NOAA Weather Radio
- Blankets and sleeping bags
- Cash or checks
- Important family documents
- Fire extinguisher
- First aid supplies
- Flashlights and spare batteries
- Garbage bags
- Local maps
- Manual can opener
- Matches in a waterproof container
- Non-prescription medications (e.g., pain relievers, anti-diarrhea meds)
- Whistle for signaling for help
If you have pets, ensure you have accessible leashes, harnesses, and pet carriers. Be prepared for any winter storms coming and the situations they carry.
6. Get Ready for a Power Outage
Charge your mobile phones ahead of time and keep portable battery backups ready for extended device use during an outage. Place flashlights or battery-powered lights strategically in your home for easy navigation during a blackout.
If you live in an outage-prone area, consider getting a portable generator table or a home standby model. For portable generators, have enough gasoline or propane before the winter snowstorm to run them as needed.
Always use portable generators outdoors and away from windows, avoiding indoor or enclosed spaces like garages, crawl spaces, or basements to ensure safety.
Secure Your Home Against Storm Damage With United Restoration
As winter storms approach, it’s crucial to take them seriously. United Restoration, a trusted industry leader in water damage remediation and restoration, is here to protect your home. Don’t underestimate the potential damage of winter weather — act now to safeguard your property.
A winter storm may be unpredictable, but our expertise isn’t. Let’s face this season together. Visit United Restoration and prepare for any weather-related challenges that may arise. Your home’s safety is our priority.
Contact us today for top-tier assistance and ensure your peace of mind throughout the season.