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Prepare for cold weather
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As a wave of arctic air rolls across the United States, Georgia faces bone-chilling temperatures and the possibility of snow. Because Georgia is not usually prone to extreme snow and ice, even small amounts can cause severe problems.
“With recent temperatures at or below freezing and a chance of snow this week, I strongly urge Georgians to prepare now for winter weather,” Georgia Emergency Management Agency Director Charley English said.
Dozens of Americans die each year due to exposure to cold weather. Meteorologists with the National Weather Service consider winter weather a “deceptive killer” because most deaths relate indirectly to these storms. In fact, 70 percent of ice and snow-related injuries result from automobile accidents. Extreme cold can also cause frostbite, which damages body tissue, and hypothermia, which occurs when the body temperature drops below 95 degrees. Both can cause serious injury or even death.
Be ready when severe winter weather threatens. A key part of preparedness involves having a ready kit that contains the supplies individuals and families need to survive for a minimum of three days. It contains bottled water, non-perishable foods for your family and pets, sleeping bags or bedding, extra clothes, medicine, flashlights, a battery-powered weather radio, extra batteries, a first aid kit and a manual can opener.
It is also wise to consider having at least two emergency supply kits, one full kit at home and a smaller kit in your vehicle.
For car, motorists should have extra water and non-perishable food, warm blankets, extra clothes and gloves, jumper cables, a flashlight with extra batteries, first aid kit and a bag of abrasive material, such as sand, salt or cat litter, for added traction if the car gets stuck on the road.  
For a complete list of items or to create a custom personal profile that will detail all of the supplies, contact numbers and meeting places for you and your family, go to
Also, make sure pets have a warm, dry place to stay with plenty of food and water. Homes should be well insulated. Put weather stripping around your doors and windows, insulate pipes and allow faucets to drip a little during below freezing weather to avoid frozen pipes and open cabinet doors to allow heat to get to uninsulated pipes under sinks and appliances near exterior walls.
If you don’t need to go out, stay home. If you must drive, slow down, don’t tailgate and keep both hands on the wheel. If you lose control, don’t slam on your brakes. If you start to spin, steer in the direction of the spin until your vehicle comes to a stop.
To learn how to prepare for winter weather and other disasters, visit
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