Winter storm preparation

JANUARY 26, 2018

You might think that you are prepared for storms but you likely missed a few of the tips on this list. Read more to make sure that you are as prepared as you can be for when the next storm hits.

1. Prepare your emergency kit

Include winter-specific gear and replenish it each winter.

2. Make a communications plan with your family

Discuss how you will contact each other and what actions you’ll take in case of an emergency.

3. Stay connected to a radio or TV for alerts and warnings on hazardous conditions from Environment Canada

Download any available free smartphone apps. Organizations like the Canadian Red Cross can also provide information about finding shelters and how to receive first aid if you need it.

4. Limit travel

If you absolutely have to travel, then be sure to keep an emergency kit in your vehicle.

5. Bring pets and other animals inside

Make sure pets have access to fresh water as opposed to frozen water.

6. Winterize your home

Insulate walls and attics, caulk and weather strip doors and windows, and install storm windows or cover windows with plastic.

7. Clean chimneys and other heating equipment

Make sure they are inspected each year.

8. Insulate pipes with insulation or newspapers and plastic

If a hard freeze is expected, allow faucets to drip a little to avoid solid freezing.

9. Winterize your vehicle

  • Make sure your antifreeze levels are good.
  • Make sure your battery and ignition system are in top condition.
  • Make sure your windshield wipers are working well.
  • Use snow tires with adequate tread. In extreme cases of icy and snowy terrain, add chains or snow tires with studs.
  • Check the level and weight of your oil. Heavier oils congeal more at low temperatures and don’t lubricate as well.

10. Bring extra layers of clothing and warm blankets if traveling by bus or car

If you get stranded you’ll have some protection from the cold. Pack an extra water bottle and some snacks, too.