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Winter is Here!

I love snow more than most people. This past week we have been bombarded with news and warnings of Winter Storm Jonas, who is expected to hit the East Coast on Friday. Here is a list of precautions and ways to prepare for the onslaught of winter weather.

General Preparation

  • Withdraw cash from an ATM before the snow hits.
  • FIRST AID KIT. If you want to know what to put in it refer to this past blog post of ours.
  • Wash all of your warm winter clothes before the storm is upon us.
  • If you have little ones or pets double-check your supplies of diapers, food, litter, etc.
  • Prepare for power outages by keeping battery and crank-operated devices around, invest in a phone charger that does not need electricity.
  • Make sure you keep at least 3 days’ worth of water around, you can buy bottles at the store or fill up your bathtub with water.
  • Make sure to keep rock salt or cat litter handy to add traction to icy walkways and roads.

Automobile Prep and Rules to Follow

  • Do not drive alone or at night!
  • Do not take back roads if possible as these are treated last and will be the most treacherous.
  • Put a kit in your car full of battery-operated devices, water, food, and especially blankets!
  • Make sure you have at least half a tank of gas in your car and that your tires are properly inflated.
  • Avoid using your parking brake in the cold weather.
  • If your car battery is three years old or older, it is more likely to fail as temperatures drops, according to AAA. Never attempt to charge or jump-start a battery that is frozen, as it may rupture or explode.
  • Never warm up a vehicle in an enclosed area, such as a garage.
  • Consider replacing your wiper blades and adding winter formula fluid to your washer fluid.
  • If there are outdoor cats in your area, bang on the hood of your car before starting the engine to give them a chance to escape.

Home Prep

  • Unless building snowmen, stay indoors as much as possible. When outside dress as warmly as possible but utilize loose-fitting clothes so as not to constrict movement.
  • Watch for signs of hypothermia (uncontrollable shivering, weak pulse, disorientation, incoherence, and drowsiness) and frostbite (gray, white or yellow skin discoloration, numbness, and waxy-feeling skin).
  • Stock up on essentials, bread, eggs, milk, but do not go crazy at the store. Other people need food as well and those grocery store workers are dealing with a lot. Be kind.
  • Keep all space heaters and other heating equipment away from flammable items.
  • Wash and have extra blankets, snuggies, flannel sheets, etc. The heat may go out and you will want to bundle!
  • To prevent frozen pipes, State Farm suggests letting your hot and cold faucets drip overnight and open cabinet doors to allow heat to get to uninsulated pipes under sinks on exterior walls.
  • Acquaint yourself with the emergency shut-offs or anything else in your home in case of an emergency.
  • Fill a large pasta pot with water and keep in case the pipes freeze and you need to flush your toilet.

Finally, in the event of inclement weather, be on the lookout for homeless people, who could get hypothermia as temperatures drop. If you see someone your area who needs shelter or warmer clothing, call the following numbers:

— The District – 202-535-7252

— Arlington County – 703-527-4077

— Fairfax County – 703-691-2131

— Maryland Crisis Hotline – 301-662-2255

— Montgomery County. – 240-777-4000

— Prince George’s County – 888-731-0999

Curcio Law wishes a safe weekend to all of our readers!

 

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