Snow-blanketed lawns, glistening icicles, powdery white hills ? it?s a beautiful scene. Until it leaves you barricaded indoors or stranded on roadways. That?s when your winter wonderland can turn into a major disaster. The weight of snow and ice can snap power lines, cutting off electricity to your home ? leaving you without light and heat. These wintry conditions can last anywhere from three to six months, depending on where you live. So it?s important to know how to survive winter weather, inside and outside.
Inside your home:
Check the furnace before you plan to use it.
Seal any drafty windows.
Prepare a home safety kit with bottled water, high energy canned goods (about 10 per person), a manual can opener and a battery-operated radio.
Keep flashlights, candles and matches handy in case of power outages.
Keep salt, sand or kitty litter on hand.
Put space heaters 3 feet away from clothing or drapes.
Have a first-aid kit.
Have your chimney swept annually.
Outside, keep these tips in mind:
Take it easy. Overexertion in cold weather could cause a heart attack and sweating could cause hypothermia.
When shoveling, always set a slow pace.
Don't shovel snow into roadways.
Wear several layers of loose fitting, warm, lightweight clothes to prevent frostbite.
Come indoors for regular intervals to warm up.
Seventy percent of deaths during ice or snow storms occur in vehicles, so be sure to remember the following tips.
In the car:
Have a blanket or sleeping bag inside.
Have your brakes and tires inspected.
Check fluids (oil, antifreeze) and keep your car fueled up.
Keep sand, salt or kitty litter in the trunk along with a shovel, broom and windshield scraper.
Put a flashlight with extra batteries in the glove compartment.
Invest in jumper cables.
Stow a first-aid kit in the trunk.
Keep nutrition bars, bottled water and high energy canned food in the car, along with a can opener.
You're trapped in a storm. Now what?
If you get stranded, stay with your vehicle.
Run the engine about 10 minutes each hour for heat. Make sure there's no snow blocking the tailpipe and crack the window from time to time to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning.
Attract attention by leaving your inside light on and tying something bright to the antenna.
Move your extremities to keep blood circulating.
Don?t let its beauty deceive you. Snow, in heavy amounts, can be extremely dangerous. The important thing is to remember to prepare before you find yourself in a life-threatening situation. Keep this list to make sure you?re covered.