Tips on planning for winter weather outages - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Tips on planning for winter weather outages

(Source: WAFF) (Source: WAFF)
DECATUR, AL (WAFF) -

The time to think about emergency planning is before an event happens. 

Eddie Hicks, Executive Director of the Morgan County Emergency Management Agency, says there are some people who will be more prepared than the rest of us. 

"The ones that go camping a lot... They're prepared a lot better than the ones that don't," he said.

Hicks says you can put together a kit to keep in your car. 

"It's got some things to keep you warm. A little fire lighter. It's got where you can keep your feet warm... where you can keep your hands warm. Emergency blankets. We got it in the container here," he said as he looked through the kit.

Inside a house with no electricity? No problem with a secondary heat source. 

"Kerosene heaters. You can tell where its been well used. You have to use this in well ventilated areas."

Hicks says make sure there is a carbon monoxide detector close by to prevent tragedy when trying to keep warm.

Again - remember the detectors and check the batteries.

It's a good idea to have plenty of non-perishable food on hand, but if you have no electricity, there is still a concern as to how to heat it.

Hicks says if you can, make use of that secondary heat source or use your grill. 

And of course, the camping stoves. But make certain to stock up. Hicks says go for things that will last. 

"Peanut butter - that's going to have a pretty long shelf life. Stockpile it and use the oldest first."

Also check out your local military surplus store for meals ready to eat. And make certain to have plenty of water. If that water is going to sit for a long time, make sure it remains pure. 

"Two drops of Clorox per gallon of water is what need to be in here every 6 months, maybe add another couple of drops in that if you're going to keep that without pouring it out. "

A generator can help tremendously. Hicks showed us one he uses. "Its an 1850 per-kWh, so this would just run the basic things in there. You could run lights and things like that."

Hicks says every county has an EMA office where you can get more information through pamphlets, to help you get started. even coloring books for the kids. He says that information is very specific to meet certain needs. "People with disabilities, the elderly, how do you take care of your pets."

Or he says you can go on line to fema.gov.

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