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Winter comes as no surprise to most people who live in countries with four seasons, but many are not ready for winter storms and extreme cold temperatures. For most people, life goes on as usual in winter, with many people going to work, children going to school, people going to the groceries or markets, and some even traveling far distances. Older individuals and other less active people may spend more time indoors. To add to all these, winter is a time when people try to enjoy the holidays in spite of the weather. But no matter what our daily activities are, we all have to prepare for winter to protect our health and safety.
There are many aspects people have to prepare for in winter. Aside from shifting to winter fashion, people have to get their homes ready for extreme temperatures.
It is also important to prepare your cars for winter, whether you are traveling to work or going on a holiday vacation. Finally, taking care of your health, as well as your family's health, during winter must be a priority, since health problems such as viral infections and stress-related problems may increase during this season.
Get Your Home Ready For Winter
In addition, you should also get ready for winter storms and emergencies. Here are some ways to prepare and survive the winter months indoors:
- Install storm windows. You can also cover your windows from the inside with plastic.
- Weather-strip your windows and doors.
- Insulate your walls, including the attic.
- Insulate your water lines that run along the outer walls to prevent water from freezing.
- Repair leaking roofs and clean out your gutters.
- Have your heating systems professionally cleaned and checked for working condition.
- Inspect your fireplace and chimney, making sure they are clean.
- Consider having safe alternate heating sources and fuels.
- Install a battery-operated carbon monoxide detector. Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colorless and odorless gas that is deadly when inhaled. Early symptoms of CO toxicity include headache, disorientation, and nausea.
- Check your snow-removal equipment.
- Install an outdoor thermometer.
- Cut off tree branches that could cause danger to you or your home.
- During extremely cold weather, it is wise to check your home temperature often and to keep as much heat inside. Avoid unnecessary opening of windows and doors.
- If temperatures drop below freezing, allow your water taps to drip continuously by leaving them slightly open.
- Avoid using charcoal or gas grills indoors because their fumes could be deadly.
- Avoid using generators near a window, inside your house, basement, or garage.
- Never leave lighted candles unattended.
- Do not use an electric space heater near anything that can catch fire (drapes, beddings, etc.).
- Keep a fire extinguisher ready, especially near areas to be heated.
- Basic winter items you need at home include a snow shovel, waterproof floor mats and de-icing compounds.