Cold Weather Tips

Video: Winter Kit for Car

Take steps to be safe and warm in cold weather

Proper Clothing for Cold Weather

  • Wear layers of loose-fitting, lightweight, warm clothing. Trapped air between the layers will insulate you. Outer garments should be tightly woven, water repellent, and hooded.
  • Wear a hat because 40 percent of your body heat can be lost from your head.
  • Wear scarfs to cover your face and protect your mouth/lungs from extreme cold.
  • Mittens that are snug at the wrist are better than gloves.
  • Try to stay dry and out of the wind. (Wet clothes chill the body rapidly)
  • Wear sleeves that are snug at the wrist
  • Wear water-resistant coat and shoes.
  • Be sure that your outer layer of clothing is tightly woven to reduce body-heat loss. (Wool, silk or polypropylene inner layers of clothing will hold more heat than cotton).
  • Do not ignore shivering. It's an important first sign that the body is losing heat. Persistent shivering is a signal to return indoors.

Vehicle/Driving Preparation

Prepare your car:

  • Have a “Vehicle Preparedness Kit”.
  • Make sure vehicle gas tank is full.
  • Check all vehicle fluids (antifreeze, oil, windshield solvent).
  • Winterize your vehicle (Check tires, battery, lights, exhaust system, brakes, etc.).

If snow, sleet, freezing rain or ice are in the forecast:

  • If possible, stay indoors and off the roadways. If you must travel, stay on main roads and avoid shortcuts.
  • Keep sand in your car to improve traction.
  • Have proper equipment (Traction mats, snow shovel, snow brush, ice scraper, booster cables)
  • Take your cell phone (Use it during emergencies and for expected arrival or travel delays).
  • Clear snow and ice from your vehicle (hood, roof, windows and lights) before driving.
  • Wear your seat belt and leave plenty of room for stopping.
  • Use your brakes carefully (It takes more time to stop in adverse conditions).
  • Watch for slippery spots - especially bridges, ramps, and overpasses.
  • Do not use your cruise control in wintry conditions (Even roads that appear clear can have sudden slippery spots. The short touch of your brakes to deactivate the cruise control feature can cause you to lose control of your vehicle).

Preventing Pipes from Freezing

Read tips from the American Red Cross on preventing pipes from freezing.