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Winter Safety Tips

Published on Feb. 18, 2020

Northern Michigan winters can be challenging and extreme weather conditions can develop at any time. To ensure our communities are prepared, we’ve developed this important list of cold weather tips!

When you’re commuting to work or running errands:

  • Avoid traveling on ice-covered roads if possible.
  • Allow for extra driving time to arrive safely to your destination.
  • Pack extra clothes, boots, blankets, flashlights, and phone chargers in your vehicle.
  • Check for icy surfaces with both feet before leaving your vehicle.
  • Walk like a penguin. Keep your hands free. Make sure you are wearing sturdy shoes with good grip. Shuffle frequently. Carry your belongings in a back pack.  
  • Allow extra time so you can walk slowly and carefully. Do not run!
  • If you have car trouble or get stranded somewhere, stay in your vehicle until help arrives.

When you’re indoors during a winter storm:

  • Be careful while using space heaters or fireplaces, and avoid using candles during a power outage.
  • Know where your flashlights are and keep extra batteries on hand.
  • Leave water taps slightly open to prevent freezing pipes.
  • Eat well-balanced meals to stay warm.
  • Avoid alcohol and caffeine because they can cause your body to lose heat more rapidly.
  • If you have elderly friends or neighbors, check on them frequently to ensure that their homes are adequately heated.

When you’re outdoors during a winter storm:

  • Dress in layers and wear hats, scarves, and mittens.
  • Take every precaution to avoid prolonged exposure to the elements.
  • Avoid walking on ice.
  • Avoid getting wet.
  • If you have to shovel snow or do other outdoor work, work in small intervals and go inside frequently to warm up.
  • If you have elderly neighbors, offer to help shovel their walkways or driveways.

Click here for winter injury prevention tips.