Extreme Cold Safety Tips
The weather can be unpredictable, especially as the winter weather comes and goes during the final months of the season. Below are a few tips to keep you safe this season.
- Minimize travel
- Stay indoors during the worst part of the extreme cold
- Keep a winter survival kit in your vehicle if you must travel
- Check tire pressure, antifreeze levels, heaters/defroster, etc.
- Learn how to shut off water valves for potential pipe bursts
- Check on the elderly
- Bring pets inside
How should I dress?
- Wear layers of loose-fitting, lightweight, warm clothing, and a hat
- Mittens, snug at the wrist, are better than gloves
- Cover your mouth to protect your lungs from extreme cold
- Try to stay dry and out of the wind
Please be aware and extremely careful, especially when going to your car – sidewalks and parking lots can be very slick.
In cold temperatures, approach with caution and assume that all wet, dark areas on pavements are slippery and icy. Dew or water vapor can freeze on cold surfaces, forming an extra-thin, nearly invisible layer of ice that can look like a wet spot on the pavement.
- Walk in designated walkways as much as possible. Taking shortcuts over snow piles and other frozen areas can be hazardous. Look ahead when you walk; snow- or ice-covered sidewalks or driveways, especially if on a hill, may require travel along its grassy edge for traction.
- Taking shortcuts through areas where snow and ice removal is not feasible can be hazardous.
- Bend slightly and walk flat-footed with your center of gravity directly over the feet as much as possible.
- Extend your arms out to your sides to maintain balance. Beware if you are carrying a heavy backpack or other loads—your sense of balance will be off.
- If you must carry a load, try not to carry too much; leave your hands and arms free to balance yourself.
- Keep your hands out of your pockets. Hands out of your pockets while walking lowers your center of gravity and increases balance. You can help break your fall with your hands-free if you do start to slip.
- Watch where you are stepping and GO S-L-O-W-L-Y!! This will help your reaction time to changes in traction.
- When walking on steps always use the hand railings and plant your feet firmly on each step.
- Use special care when entering and exiting vehicles; use the vehicle for support.
- Take short steps or shuffle for stability. It also helps to stop occasionally to break momentum.