Stay indoors during the storm.
Walk carefully on snowy, icy, walkways.
Avoid overexertion when shoveling snow. Overexertion can bring on a heart attack—a major cause of death in the winter. If you must shovel snow, stretch before going outside.
Keep dry. Change wet clothing frequently to prevent a loss of body heat. Wet clothing loses all of its insulating value and transmits heat rapidly.
Watch for signs of frostbite. These include loss of feeling and white or pale appearance in extremities such as fingers, toes, ear lobes, and the tip of the nose. If symptoms are detected, get medical help immediately.
Watch for signs of hypothermia. These include uncontrollable shivering, memory loss, disorientation, incoherence, slurred speech, drowsiness, and apparent exhaustion. If symptoms of hypothermia are detected, get the victim to a warm location, remove wet clothing, warm the center of the body first and give warm, non-alcoholic beverages if the victim is conscious. Get medical help as soon as possible.
Drive only if it is absolutely necessary. If you must drive: travel in the day; don’t travel alone; keep others informed of your schedule; stay on main roads and avoid back road shortcuts.
Let someone know your destination, your route, and when you expect to arrive. If your car gets stuck along the way, help can be sent along your predetermined route.
If the pipes freeze, remove any insulation or layers of newspapers and wrap pipes in rags. Completely open all faucets and pour hot water over the pipes, starting where they were most exposed to the cold (or where the cold was most likely to penetrate).
Maintain ventilation when using kerosene heaters to avoid build-up of toxic fumes. Refuel kerosene heaters outside and keep them at least three feet from flammable objects.
Conserve fuel, if necessary, by keeping your residence cooler than normal. Temporarily close off heat to some rooms.
If you will be going away during cold weather, leave the heat on in your home, set to a temperature no lower than 55ºF.
Flood waters and standing waters pose various risks, including infectious
diseases, chemical hazards, and injuries.
Eating or drinking anything contaminated by flood water can cause diarrheal disease. To protect
yourself and your family,
- Practice good hygiene, such as hand washing after contact with flood waters.
- Do not allow children to play in flood water areas.
- Wash children's hands frequently (always before meals).
- Do not allow children to play with toys that have been contaminated by flood water
- and have not been disinfected.
Open wounds and rashes exposed to flood waters can become infected. To protect yourself and your
- Avoid exposure to flood waters if you have an open wound.
- Cover open wounds with a waterproof bandage.
- Keep open wounds as clean as possible by washing well with soap and clean water.
- If a wound develops redness, swelling, or drainage, seek immediate medical attention.
Be aware of potential chemical hazards during floods. Flood waters may have moved hazardous
chemical containers of solvents or other industrial chemicals from their normal storage places.
Flood water poses drowning risks for everyone, regardless of their ability to swim. Swiftly moving
shallow water can be deadly, and even shallow standing water can be dangerous for small children.
Vehicles do not provide adequate protection from flood waters. They can be swept away or may stall in
Animal and Insect Bites
Flood waters can displace animals, insects, and reptiles. To protect yourself and your family, be alert
and avoid contact.
Flood waters may contain sharp objects, such as glass or metal fragments, that can cause injury and
lead to infection.
Cleanup of Flood Water
When returning to your home after a flooding emergency, be aware that flood water may contain
Information provided by the United States Centers for Disease Control & Prevention
- Develop a response plan -- where to go, how to get there, what to take, and who to notify about your decision
- Know evacuation routes and shelter locations
- Fill automotive fuel tank
- Waterproof important documents (i.e. medical records, insurance, bank account numbers, and social security card)
- Know how to turn off utilities, if instructed
- Clean gutters and downspouts
- Fill a duffel bag with the following supplies
- Flashlights and extra batteries
- Battery-powered radio with extra batteries
- Water (at least 1 gallon per person recommended)
- Foods that do not require refrigeration or cooking
- Prescription medications in their original bottles
- First aid kit
- Cash (banks and ATMs may not be available)
- Change of clothes for each household member
- Sleeping bag or bedroll and pillow for each household member
- Stay calm, listen to radio, and television, if possible
- Stay away from windows and glass doors
- Take refuge in an interior room, closet, or hallway
- Avoid opening refrigerator or freezer (food lasts no longer than 4-6 hours)
- Use coolers for cold food. Perishable foods should not be stored more than 2 hours above 40 degrees.
- Use generators only in well ventilated areas
- Connect only individual appliances to portable generators
- Drive carefully - traffic lights may be out
- Call 911 for life threatening emergencies only
- Keep listening to National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio or other local radio or television stations for instructions
- If you have evacuated, return home when local officials tell you it is safe to do so
- Inspect your home - be aware of gas leaks, electrical wiring, and contamination. Inform local authorities of findings
- Look to local disaster relief providers for assistance and supplies.
- Pet Safety Tips:
- Prevent pets from consuming contaminated food or water outside
- Be cautious when allowing pets outdoors, familiar scents and landmarks may be altered and cause stress for your animal