Severe weather – thunderstorms, hail, blizzards, ice storms, high winds or heavy rain – can happen without warning and in any season. With severe weather often comes a loss of power, so be prepared to be on your own for a minimum of 72 hours by developing a household plan, putting together your emergency kit and connecting with your neighbours.
Severe Weather and Storm Preparedness
- Winterize your home by insulating walls and attics, weather-stripping doors and windows, clearing rain gutters and removing tree branches that could fall during strong winds.
- Inspect your chimney or flue to help prevent structural fires and ensure smoke, carbon monoxide and other potentially harmful gases are properly vented.
- Fireplaces, woodstoves, barbecues and camp stoves can be used for emergency cooking, just don’t use the last two indoors due to the risk of carbon monoxide build-up.
- Consider a home generator during extended power outages, as long as it’s used in accordance with manufacturer’s guidelines and never operated indoors.
- Stow flashlights around the house and remember to have extra batteries on hand in case of power failure. Other safe lighting options include glow sticks, crank-flashlights, headlamps and battery-operated lanterns.
- Have a battery-operated radio and listen to your local station for warnings, advice and instructions.
Don’t forget to check in on your neighbours during bad weather conditions, especially elderly people or those with mobility issues. You never know who might need help. Experience has shown when disaster strikes, the most immediate help will come from those around you – your neighbours. Connecting and building relationships with them today will mean a better response and faster recovery.