cold.jpg News Article 29Jan
Cold Weather Safety Tips

• Wear layers of lightweight clothing to stay warm. Gloves and a hat will help prevent losing
body heat.
• Know the signs of hypothermia - confusion, dizziness, exhaustion and severe shivering. If
someone has these symptoms, they should get immediate medical attention.
• Watch for symptoms of frostbite including numbness, flushed gray, white, blue or yellow skin
discoloration, numbness or waxy feeling skin.
• Bring the pets indoors. If that’s not possible, make sure they have enough shelter to keep them
warm and that they can get to unfrozen water.
• Avoid frozen pipes - run water, even at a trickle, to help prevent them from freezing. Keep the
thermostat at the same temperature day and night to help avoid freezing pipes.
• Do not use a stove or oven to heat the home.
• Space heaters should sit on a level, hard surface and anything flammable should be kept at least
three feet away.
• If using a fireplace, use a glass or metal fire screen large enough to catch sparks and rolling
• Turn off space heaters and make sure fireplace embers are out before leaving the room or going
to bed.
• Make sure your phone is charged and you have a blanket in your car, if you have to head out on
the road. 
• Stay dry, wet clothes lose all insulating properties and can trasmit the cold more rapidly.


Use of Electric Space Heaters

 Buy only heaters evaluated by a nationally recognized laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratories (UL).
 Check to make sure it has a thermostat control mechanism, and will switch off automatically if the heater falls over.
 Heaters are not dryers or tables; don't dry clothes or store objects on top of your heater.
 Space heaters need space; keep combustibles at least three feet away from each heater.
 Always unplug your electric space heater when not in use.  Turn off at night or whenever you sleep.  Never use an extension cord with space heaters - plug directly into wall socket.

Using a kerosene heater???  Never refuel indoors.  Remove the kerosene heater outdoors, turn off and wait for it to cool down before refueling and only use the correct type of fuel.

 Reduce your exposure to indoor air pollutants by properly operating and maintaining your portable kerosene heater. Although portable kerosene heaters are very efficient in the burning of fuel to produce heat, low levels of certain pollutants such as carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide are produced. Exposure to low levels of these pollutants may be harmful, especially to individuals with chronic respiratory or circulatory health problems.

To assure you and family members are not exposed to significant levels of these pollutants, you should follow carefully the following rules of safe operation:

  • Operate your heater in a room with a door open to the rest of the house.
  • If you must operate your heater in a room with the door closed to the rest of the house, open an outside window approximately an inch to permit fresh air to effectively dilute the pollutants below a level of concern.
  • Always operate your heater according to the manufacturer:s instructions, making sure that the wick is set at the proper level as instructed by the manufacturer.
  • Keep the wick in your heater clean and in good operating condition by following the cleaning and maintenance procedures recommended by the manufacturer.
  • Keep an outside window opened approximately an inch to ensure adequate fresh air infiltration. This is important regardless of whether you use a kerosene heater or some other conventional method of heating. If your home is relatively new and tight, or if it is older but has been winterized to reduce air infiltration from the outside.

General Heating Tips     
Furnaces, fireplaces and chimneys should be cleaned and checked each year by an appropriate professional prior to using.  Clear away any clutter from these heating devices, at least 3 feet away.
Only use seasoned wood in fireplaces and never use ignitable liquids to start a fire.
The 3-foot rule also applies to furnaces and fireplaces.  No combustibles items within 3 feet of these heating appliances.
Dispose of fireplace ash into a metal container and store outdoors away from structures on a concrete surface.  Fireplace ash can ignite a fire days after they have been discarded.

Finally, ensure your smoke and carbon monoxide (CO) alarms are working by pushing the test button on the front cover.  If you do not hear an audible warning, replace your alarm with a new 10-year, tamper proof, with hush feature alarm.  Having a working smoke alarm dramatically increases your chances of surviving a fire. A working CO detector will protect you and your family from deadly "silent killer" fumes that may be building up in your home.  Remember to practice a home escape plan frequently with your family.


Cold Weather Tips for Pets

  • Keep your four-legged companion safe and happy while waiting for spring to arrive with these
    10 cold-weather tips for pets.
  • Limit time outdoors.During the cold months, cats should be kept indoors at all times, especially when snow or ice is
    coming down. The same goes for dogs, except for when they need to go to the bathroom. Limit
    your dogs’ time outside to only when they need to relieve themselves.
  • Check paws frequently. Immediately after coming inside from a walk, check your dog’s paws and remove ice, salt and
    mud that can get stuck between the padding.
  • The Vaseline trick. To protect dogs’ paws from the salt and chemicals that are often found on sidewalks
    during winter weather conditions, use Vaseline on your pets’ paws, or invest in doggie shoes.
    The Vaseline will create a barrier that helps to keep the salt from sticking to your dog.
  • Think about calories. If your pet is kept outdoors, he/she will typically need more food during cold weather, as the
    body burns more calories in order to keep warm. On the other hand, indoor pets usually do not
    get as much exercise when the weather is bad, and may not need as much food as they usually
    eat during warmer and calmer weather. Consult with your vet before limiting or adding to your
    pet’s daily food intake.
  • Check the water bowl. Never let your pet’s water freeze, as it’s important to stay hydrated. This is more of a tip for
    outdoor pets, but also stay conscious of where you place the water bowl indoors as well, as it is
    better to place it in a heated room than near a door.
  • Beware of hiding cats. Cats are known for climbing under vehicle engines for warmth. Check the hood of your car
    before starting it if you suspect your cat could be hidden inside.
  • Keep them leashed. It is easy for dogs to lose their scents in snowy or icy conditions, making them prone to
    becoming lost. Keep your dog on a leash during walks to ensure he/she gets home safely.
  • Fur length. According to the ASPCA, you should never shave your dog’s fur down to the skin during the
    winter, and should leave the coat in a longer style to provide warmth. If your dog is a short-
    haired breed, consider buying a sweater or jacket for walks.
  • The bed location. Make sure your pets’ beds are kept in a warm area of the house, away from drafty doors and
  • Hide the antifreeze. Antifreeze has a sweet taste that can attract animals, but it is very poisonous, even in smal lamounts, says the Pet Health Network. Wipe up any antifreeze spills immediately and keep the bottle in a place where your pet can’t reach it.