This year’s winter has been an especially ruthless one, with winds unlike ever before. In Kansas and greater Missouri, it is showing no signs of backing down, with local news reports from KSHB already warning the public of the next round of cold weather.
With all these weather-related risks bearing down upon the city, the last thing you want to be is unprepared. Here are a few ways to brace yourselves and stay protected:
Winter-proof your house
Ideally, winter-proofing should be done well before winter hits. Make sure you’ve installed weather stripping, proper insulation, and storm windows that will hold in the face of the strongest winds imaginable. Insulate all water lines that run along your walls, and repair any potential leaks in your roof before they get worse.
Check heating systems
If there’s one thing you shouldn’t be tampering with yourself, it’s your heating systems. Enlist the help of a professional to ensure your system is clean and in tiptop shape. Have alternative heating sources and fuel for backup, but you should also remember that any additional heating sources should be handled with care because if misused can cause household fires, which we have discussed here on Northeast News.
Watch your health
You might think that you’re safe from accidents once inside your home or after the snow has passed, but the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health found that hospital admissions actually increase by 23% two days after snowfall. This is likely because at-risk populations tend to stay indoors or are unable to seek medical help during storms. Pay attention to your health and understand that conditions like hypothermia can manifest in different ways. MSN outlines some signs that can be easy to miss, such as drowsiness, confusion, and clumsiness.
On The Road
Check your tires
Not all cars are built to withstand the snow. Winter tires are designed to be more flexible in extreme cold, and can grip icy ground better. It’s worth going the extra mile and ensuring your car is properly equipped with them, especially in rural areas.
Plan your journeys
Don’t head out without first checking the weather, traffic reports, and the most advisable routes. They are always easily accessible online, on your TV, or via apps. Be prepared for any setbacks that can prolong or interrupt your journey.
Prepare a winter car breakdown kit
Emergency kits are absolutely essential in case your car breaks down. Some tools to keep include a snow shovel, thermal blankets, food and drink supplies, chargers for your gadgets, and a flashlight.
What to Wear
Moisture is your worst enemy during the winter, so choose moisture-wicking shirts as your base. The Strategist recommends Under Armour base layers for their softness and durability even after years of use. Thumbholes also keep your hands warm while preventing your sleeves from riding up under the other layers. For your outer layer, you can go with a waterproof jacket to seal everything in, but wool is also a great choice. Woman Within’s wool-blend coat demonstrates the importance of quilted lining and fleece pockets for added warmth. This material is terrific at trapping warm air onto your skin, making it perfect for the winter months.
Use colors strategically
There’s a science behind the best colors to wear to keep warm. An article on Sciencing explains that dark shades absorb more heat than lighter ones as they soak up more light energy. So as an added measure, stick to your blacks and dark blues. These also make you more visible to drivers against a backdrop of snow.