10 Blizzard Survival Tips For A Safe Winter - Off-Grid

10 Blizzard Survival Tips For A Safe Winter

10 Blizzard Survival Tips For A Safe Winterimage – pixabay.com (CC0)

A blizzard is defined as a fierce winter storm, lasting for more than three hours, which combines below snowfall and strong winds. If a blizzard or “cold snap” does happen, it is important to know what to do – even if you are safely at home. Your well-being and even survival in severe circumstances can depend on how prepared you are for the event.

1. Insulate your pipes – Water pipes typically freeze at temperatures below -7ºC (20ºF), and can potentiall burst from the internal pressure of the ice. One method to help prevent this is to insulate pipework – especially in areas such as a conservatory which may drop below freezing – with the typical pipe insulation “foam noodles”. If the temperature is dropping, it may also help to leave your faucets running at a slow drip.

2. Be prepared on simple logistics – Pay your utility bills on time and keep your cell phone charged. Losing gas or electricity because of an unpaid bill before a blizzard hits is a mistake you won’t want to make.

3. Stock up your pantry – It is vital to stock your cupboards with canned and dried foods in the face of a storm.

4. Stock up on drinkable water – Keep at least 10 gallons of water on hand so you’ll have clean water just in case.

5. Prepare an emergency kit – Fill a box with emergency equipment such as flashlights, plenty of extra batteries and a battery operated AM/FM radio so you can keep track of weather updates even after the electricity has gone. Include medical supplies as well.

6. Know how to use alternative forms of heat – It is possible that your home can lose power during a blizzard so you need to have a backup heating system such as a wood burning stover, fireplace or propane / kerosene heaters. Stick to one room for heat and close off unnecessary rooms in the house. This way you won’t be depleting your fuel and firewood supply as fast as if you are trying to heat a whole house. Also cover doors and windows with thick drapes to keep heat in.

7. Watch out for frostbite – If you do go outside, remember that frostbite can occur in less than a minute in extremely cold temperatures. The areas most at risk for frostbite are earlobes, cheeks, noses, fingers and toes. This is because they are often exposed and the furthest points for circulating blood to reach. Wear proper clothing if you must go outside.

8. Layer up – During a snowstorm, developing hypothermia is a very big possibility. Use blankets, sleeping bags and layers of clothing to warm yourself. If you feel like hypothermia is beginning to set in, drink something warm, and then apply warm towels to the head, neck, armpits and groin area to raise your core temperature.

9. Keep active indoors – If you’re stuck in a snowstorm, try and keep yourself entertained. A positive mental attitude and will to live is as important as any survival technique.

10. Stay indoors – It’s not worth risking your life to get to work during a blizzard. If the weather is particularly gruesome or if weather experts are calling for road closures and urging you to stay home, take their advice seriously.

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