With days getting shorter and colder as we head into winter, it’s important to address safety hazards on your property. Complete some simple tasks around the house to mitigate risks and keep your family safe. Prepare by following these 5 winter safety tips.
Winter Safety Tips to Prevent Slipping
When water freezes on the pavement, it becomes slippery and dangerous. Help prevent ice from forming in the first place by inspecting your downspouts and drainage system to make sure runoff isn’t collecting on pathways, sidewalks, driveways, and patios. Stock up on ice melt salt and spread it on paved surfaces if the weather forecast calls for freezing temperatures and precipitation.
Check Smoke Detectors
This safety tip applies all year, but it is especially important in the winter because you are more likely to use heaters and have an open flame in the fireplace or lit candles. Press the test button on all smoke and CO alarms to make sure they are working. Review the general rules for smoke detector placement, and if you are missing them in any areas of the house, install them.
Have the Chimney Swept
If you have a fireplace, you will likely use it this winter. A fireplace and chimney that haven’t been cleaned is a dangerous fire hazard. A flammable substance called creosote builds up inside the chimney and can ignite and start a chimney fire. Chimney fires are very dangerous as they can spread and burn down the entire house.
Winter Safety Tips for a Power Outage
A power outage can happen at any time of year, but it is important that you’re prepared for it in the winter when it’s darker and colder. Keep all your supplies for a power outage in one easily accessible place.
You should have plenty of flashlights and extra batteries, warm blankets, phone changers with a portable power bank, a crank-powered radio, non-perishable food, and several gallons of water.
Boost Insulation in the Attic
If the insulation in the attic is not sufficient, snow may melt on the roof and cause ice dams. If an ice dam dislodges and falls off the roof, it can seriously injure a person. Furthermore, ice dams can cause structural damage to the roof and gutters and water damage inside the home.
Prevent ice dams by keeping the attic well insulated so the roof stays at a warmer temperature. This way, snow and ice are less likely to build up and form dams on your roof and guttering.