Are you Prepared for Severe Winter Weather?

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(NewsUSA) - When the news begins to spread about a severe winter storm coming to your area, it's not just important to know how long you have before it hits, but also to make proper preparations.

Whether you're facing the possibility of extreme amounts of sleet, snow or ice, the following tips will give you the upper hand when facing a severe winter storm:

* Keep yourself informed. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric weather radio station is one resource for emergency information. More areas have also adopted a mass notification system called IRIS, short for Immediate Response Information System (www.useiris.com). When an emergency situation occurs, the IRIS system automatically delivers information to thousands of citizens via multiple means such as cell phone, e-mail, PDA and pager. It also communicates in more than 10 languages, so successful contact in even the worst winter weather is guaranteed. Ask your local government officials whether your county has already adopted the IRIS system and, if not, consider encouraging local authorities to do so.

* Keep warm. Gather any extra blankets you may have on hand, and make sure that each member of your household has a warm coat and hat, gloves and a pair of water-resistant boots.

* Watch your water supply. Have plenty of bottled water available for drinking, and buy more than you think you will need -; approximately 1 gallon per person per day. Because extreme cold can freeze your pipes and sometimes even break them, open your tap just enough to let a small amount of water drip out.

* Assemble a disaster supply kit. Your kit should contain the following: a first-aid kit and essential medications, including a supply of prescription medications, a battery-powered weather radio, a flashlight and extra batteries, canned food and a can opener, bottled water and extra pairs of warm clothing. Make sure to assemble a separate winter weather disaster kit for your car as well.

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Are you Prepared for Severe Winter Weather?

Get through winter weather with these helpful tips.

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Word Count: 320
Article Date: October 12, 2007

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