FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 22, 2022
Safety First: Preparing for Winter in Charlottesville
CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA – During extremely cold weather or winter storms, staying warm and safe can be a challenge. Winter storms can bring cold temperatures, power failures, loss of communication services, and icy roads. To keep yourself and your loved ones safe, you should know how to prepare your home and your car before a winter storm hits. Our friends at the Virginia Department of Emergency Management noted the following tips (https://www.vaemergency.gov/threats/winter-weather/):
- During a winter storm, stay off the roads as much as possible and only drive when absolutely necessary. Always give snow plows the right of way.
- Never use a generator, grill, camp stove or gasoline, propane, natural gas, or charcoal-burning device inside your home, garage, basement, crawlspace, or any other partially enclosed area.
- Snow shoveling is a known trigger for heart attacks! Always avoid overexertion when shoveling.
- When severe weather occurs, plan to check on elderly or disabled neighbors and relatives.
- If you must travel, know the road conditions before you leave home. Visit 511Virginia.org or call 511 for road condition updates.
- Protect yourself from frostbite! Hands, feet, and face are the most commonly affected areas so wear a hat, and mittens (which are warmer than gloves) and cover your mouth with a scarf to reduce heat loss.
- Keep dry! Change out of wet clothing frequently to prevent a loss of body heat.
- Wear several layers of loose-fitting, lightweight, warm clothing rather than one layer or heavy clothing.
Also please be aware of the community supportive services that are available for you, your loved ones, and your neighbors and friends. Specifically, during this time, having safe shelter is critical. If you or someone you know finds themselves unhoused, please call the Homeless Information Line (a program of the Charlottesville Department of Human Services) at 434-207-2328. Also please know that our partners at The Haven (112 West Market Street) will be open and running from 7 am to 12 pm and then from 1pm-5pm Monday-Sunday for any member of our unsheltered community who needs access – however in cases of a medical emergency please still dial 9-1-1- or you can report directly to the emergency departments at UVA Health or Martha Jefferson for assistance.
For more resources, please check out the Charlottesville Street Sheet for tons of information on community programs and partnerships. https://bit.ly/3I589Qe
For more winter weather safety resources please check out:
- MA’s Ready campaign: https://www.ready.gov/winter-weather
- National Weather Service: https://www.weather.gov/wrn/winter_safety
- CDC: https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/winter/index.html
Public Engagement Coordinator
City of Charlottesville