Posted by Debra Worley - email
RALEIGH, NC (WECT) - It's Winter Weather Preparedness Week in North Carolina, and Governor Bev Perdue is urging residents to ready if a winter storm strikes.
"While we've been fortunate with fairly mild winters in recent years, we shouldn't become complacent," said Perdue. "People should take time now to update their family emergency plans and stock up on water, blankets, non-perishable food and other supplies now before ice and snow arrive."
According to Jeff Orrock with the National Weather Service, there is an increased chance of a wet winter and below normal temperatures because of El Nino. He said winter storms can develop quickly, causing power outages.
Perdue urged residents to practice the following winter safety tips:
- Keep alternative heating sources prepared. If you have a fireplace, store a good supply of dry, seasoned wood. Keep fire extinguishers on hand, and make sure your family knows how to use them.
- Properly vent kerosene heaters and keep any electric generators OUTSIDE and away from any open windows or doors to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning. Also, do not burn charcoal indoors. Carbon monoxide poisoning can result from charcoal fumes indoors.
- Keep fresh batteries on hand to use with flashlights and weather radios.
- Always keep at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food in your home.
- Wear multiple layers of thin clothing instead of a single layer of thick clothing to stay warm. You will be warmer and, as the temperature changes, you can easily remove layers to remain comfortable.
- If you must travel during a winter storm, store an emergency kit in your vehicle that includes: blankets, a battery-powered radio with extra batteries, a first aid kit, a flashlight with extra batteries, battery booster cables and flares, a tire repair kit and pump, a road map, a sack of cat litter (for tire traction), a tow rope, bottled water and non-perishable high-energy foods such as granola bars, extra clothing to keep dry, and a windshield scraper and brush.
- If driving on snow- or ice-covered roadways, reduce your speed. Driving at the regular speed limit will reduce your ability to control the car if you begin to slide. Leave plenty of room between you and other vehicles.
- If conditions worsen and you can no longer drive safely, pull off the highway. Stay calm and remain in your vehicle. Do not set out on foot unless you can see a building close by where you know you can take shelter.
For more information on how to prepare for winter storms, visit www.readync.org. Visit the First Alert Weather Center to keep up with the latest forecast and warning. Click here to learn the difference between each type of winter storm terms.