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Staying safe and warm in a winter storm

It’s that time of year when the UK is subject to storms like the one this week, bringing wind, snow and blizzard-like conditions with it.

Schools and workplaces all over the country must occasionally shut and in such conditions people are advised not to travel.

If you don’t need to leave the house, the storm can pass safely from outside your window, but with the temperatures dropping it’s important to take precautions to stay safe.

Here’s our top tips for staying safe in a winter storm.

Follow the alerts

Keep an eye on the weather forecast for your area and follow any instructions or weather warnings. If you’re told not to travel, don’t.

Prepare for a power outage

Power outages at this time of year can be particularly troublesome because of the cold. Plan ahead and fully charge any electronic devices you might need – like mobile phones – and make sure your torch has fresh batteries.

Add extra heat

If you can do so, set your thermostat higher to warm your home as much as possible in case the heating does go out. The warmer your home is the longer it will take to cool.

Keep your heater close

If your boiler breaks because of the cold, an electric heater – assuming the power hasn’t been cut – will be key. Make sure you have it to hand. A hot water bottle can also help you feel warm.

Fill jugs of water

If pipes freezing is a concern, make sure you have plenty of water stored in advance. Fill up jugs of water and water bottles – you could even fill the bathtub with a reserve of water just in case.

Close the doors and block drafts

Keep the doors in your home closed to keep heat from escaping and carefully block any potential drafts from doors and windows. Insulating windows is a good idea too.

Live in one room

If you do lose power or the heating goes, try and live in one room to conserve heat. A room that faces away from the direction of wind is best if possible. If the temperature is dropping quickly, insulate the room with any available blankets and pillows. Line the floors – where heat can escape – and consider draping blankets over windows and doors too.

Layer up

Wear layers to keep your body temperature up and make sure you wear socks and slippers – if it’s particularly cold indoors, don’t hesitate to wear a hat and gloves indoors too as heat can escape quickly from your hands, feet and head.

Phone your neighbours

Keep in contact with neighbours – particularly with any vulnerable neighbours or if you feel vulnerable yourself. Knowing who in your community might need assistance, or can offer some to you, will help ensure you don’t get caught in an unsafe situation.

Do you have any tips for staying safe in a winter storm?

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Rachel - Silversurfers Assistant Editor

Hello there! I’m Rachel and I’m the Assitant Editor for Silversurfers. I work behind the scenes to bring interesting, informative and entertaining subject matter to the Silversurfers community. I hope you enjoy the features we have shared with you. Please feel free to comment below and share your thoughts with us, we love to hear from you!

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Lionel
28th Feb 2018
2
Thanks for voting!
It's very cold outside tonight. -14! That's cold!

We did a run out today in a foot of snow (no big deal) and got groceries for ourselves and our elderly neighbours. You would be amazed at the reckless driving on a foot of snow sitting atop ice. A 20 ton truck canted over at 45 degrees with it's nearside wheels in a ditch which was covered in snow. No one hurt.

Woodturner ablaze, despite what so called experts say, house warm and so are we.

I say stuff the experts, let them get cold in their self righteousness, I'm not going to join in.

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