How to Stay Safe during a Winter Storm

It is forecast that the Christmas weekend will be filled with a number of significant storms. Because they have the potential to create significant disruptions, such as power outages, ice roadways, and problems with communication, meteorologists are encouraging everyone to be prepared.

According to the National Weather Service, a significant arctic blast will cause temperatures to plummet to levels that are dangerously low in nearly half of the country (NWS). At least 12 states have prepared emergency and cold weather plans in anticipation of the severe winter weather that is expected to affect a large portion of the United States.

How to Stay Safe during a Winter Storm
How to Stay Safe during a Winter Storm

From late Thursday night until late Friday afternoon, there is a winter storm watch in effect for parts of eastern Tennessee, northern Georgia, western North Carolina, and southern Virginia. These areas are located in the southern states.

The Midwest is in for a “bomb cyclone,” which will bring with it significant snowfall and blizzard conditions, as well as potentially dangerous wind chills. It is anticipated that the storm will arrive in the Pacific Northwest on Friday night. After that, it will travel to the south during the course of the weekend and strike California. It is imperative that you take a few additional precautions this year in order to keep yourself and your family safe.

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Winter storm safety advice for indoors

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides the following useful advice on how to protect yourself and your loved ones from any winter storm:

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Put on some warm clothes and try to keep them dry. This helps you avoid frostbite, which occurs when your blood vessels constrict, causing your skin temperature to drop and ice crystals to develop around and within your cells. This can happen when your blood vessels constrict.

Keep dry, and steer clear of icy spots.

Make sure your elderly friends and neighbors are okay. The over-60 crowd accounts for over half of all fatalities caused by winter storms.

Be cautious if you have young children in your home. Be sure that children younger than one-year-old are not allowed to sleep in cold rooms and are provided with warm clothing.

Never use your stove to heat anything. It is strongly discouraged by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that you heat your home using your stove. Instead, you should invest in additional coats, blankets, layers of clothes, and sleeping bags. As long as they are in good working order, space heaters are also acceptable.

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Outdoor safety tips during winter storms

When you absolutely have to venture outside during a snowstorm, the National Weather Service offers the following advice:

  • Avoid traveling on roads that are covered in ice or when there is a snowstorm that could be distracting.
  • Keep yourself dry, and stay away from locations that may be icy.
  • Never let your pets out unattended while they are on snow or ice. The winter months see a greater number of missing dogs than any other time of year.
  • Staying inside your vehicle during a storm is the best course of action to take if you find yourself stranded outside.

Winter storm risks

People who are out and about during winter storms put themselves in the greatest danger. Car accidents account for around seventy percent of winter storm-related fatalities. Staying indoors during the harsh winter weather is highly recommended, especially if you are able to avoid having to travel.

When individuals are cooped up inside for extended periods of time without heat, this presents an additional hazard that can occur during winter storms. Find out if you or a loved one is suffering from hypothermia by taking your temperature.

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Hypothermia occurs when a person’s body temperature lowers to a level that could be life-threatening because they are exposed to extremely cold temperatures. If the temperature is lower than 95 degrees, get medical attention as soon as possible. If you are unable to acquire the assistance of a medical professional, you should gradually warm the person up by beginning with their extremities.

Finally, staying away from alcoholic beverages is likely to be the best course of action during winter storms. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), drinking alcohol is frequently associated with hypothermia. When you drink alcohol, your mental awareness decreases, which limits your capacity to identify indicators of cold.