Winter Isn't Over Yet
The sun is starting to set later, which means warmer days are on the way! But winter isn't over just yet. As snowstorms continue to take over parts of the country, the unpredictable weather and temperatures are something to stay prepared for.
With winter storm season in full swing, it's important to know how to keep yourself, your family, and your home safe. Here are some steps you can take to prepare yourself before the next storm hits.
Stock your food pantry. Your pantry should include many non-perishable items so that if you lose power, you won't have to worry about any of it spoiling. On average, aim to have enough food for at least three days.
Some good foods to have on hand include crackers, granola bars, canned goods, soups, hot cocoa, instant coffee, peanut butter, honey, bread, and grains (such as barley, rice, or oats). Also, be sure to pick up a variety of fruits that don't need to be refrigerated — such as oranges, apples, or bananas — as well as some fresh veggies.
Buy bottled water. Make sure you have plenty of bottled water if your pipes freeze, cutting off your access to tap water. You'll also need water to brush your teeth, do dishes, flush toilets, or bathe. If space permits, you can fill up the bathtub, jugs, bottles, and other containers with water ahead of a storm.
Build an emergency kit. This should include things like first aid items, a battery-powered or hand-crank weather radio, non-prescription medications (such as pain relievers, anti-diarrhea medication, etc.), flashlights, extra batteries, a whistle to signal for help, local maps, cash or traveler's checks, copies of important family documents (such as insurance policies and identification), a fire extinguisher, matches in a waterproof container, candles, blankets, and sleeping bags.
Stock up on ice melt and check your tools. Ice melt salt tends to go quickly at local stores right before a storm, be sure to start stocking up early so that you have plenty for after the storm. You'll want to have enough so you can shovel and salt all your outdoor stairs, stoops, and walkways right after the storm before the snow has time to melt and then turn to ice when the temperature drops.
Make sure you have a good snow shovel (or two) before the storm. Check that they're not too worn or cracked to ensure ease of use.
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