If the weather forecasts call for a snow storm with potentially heavy accumulations and possible strong wind, we need to be prepared just in case we're stuck in our home for some period of time. Winter storms can go from bad to worse quickly. The time to prepare is well in advance of any predicted snow storm.
1) In addition to having the items on hand from the Supply List know that winter weather requires special preparation for not only ourselves, but for our homes and vehicles as well.
2) Have warm clothing, snow boots, extra blankets, gloves, scarves, mittens, and heavy winter coats. Having thermal underwear for all family members is a good idea.
3) Make sure all garden hoses are disconnected outside the home. Leaving them connected may cause a pipe to freeze inside your home and cause serious water damage. If you fear any other internal pipes may freeze inside your home, perhaps one that rests against an outside wall for example, leave your faucets running with cold water in a steady stream about half the diameter of a pencil. This will help prevent the pipes from freezing.
4) Vehicles should be winterized and kept with a full tank of fuel during winter months. Make sure you have an emergency car kit that includes: first-aid kit, two emergency blankets, flashlight with fresh batteries, roadside flares, and a small or folding shovel. If you are planning on traveling any distance during the winter, it's smart to carry some food and water in your vehicle. Pay close attention to your tires in the winter to make sure they have enough tread to provide good traction. Also maintain the proper inflation. Another good idea is to carry a few bags of sand. This added weight can help with traction and it can also be used if you get stuck by spreading it in front of and in back of your tires for traction.
5) During a snow storm, drifts and blowing snow not only cause difficulty in getting in and out of your home but they can also cover roof exhaust and ventilation vents. In blizzard or windy conditions snow may blow into attics, wall spaces, or ceiling areas which when later melted can cause serious damage to drywall and insulation. Some homeowners cover external roof vents with plastic or tape to prevent the snow from blowing in. DO NOT attempt to cover the natural gas vent pipe(s) on your roof as this can cause carbon monoxide to build up in your home which is deadly. Anticipate drifting snow and park vehicles in a garage if possible, if not park appropriately to minimize drifting near entry ways.
6) Use extreme care with candles and any lighted flame at all times, winter or not. While they may be pleasant and provide light during a snow storm, they also cause hundreds of house fires each year. It's safer to use flashlights and battery powered portable lanterns. see Power Outage page
7) During a winter storm, when venturing out to clear snow from walkways or vehicles dress in layers and use caution not to overexert yourself. Lots of heart attacks happen each winter from snow shoveling.
8) Do not run snow blowers or other gasoline powered equipment in enclosed areas like your garage without plenty of ventilation. Carbon monoxide fumes are deadly.
9) Don’t attempt to travel unless you absolutely have to and then take it slow and allow plenty of time. Do Not try to travel during a blizzard. Stay in and stay safe.
Denver Weather Forecast, CO