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Protecting yourself and your home from the cold

Posted at 11:24 AM, Jan 11, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-18 11:51:43-05

INDIANAPOLIS -- As temperatures fall below zero, there are some important safety tips to keep in mind.

The wind chills are in the 10 to 20 below zero range.

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Some tips to stay safe in these bitter temps are: 

  • Avoid traveling if possible and stay home
  • If you have to travel:
    • Keep a full tank of gas in your car to make sure the tank or fuel lines don't freeze
    • Prepare an emergency road kit with a bag of abrasive material (sand, salt, cat litter), blankets, food, water, maps, a first-aid kit, jumper cables, a snow shovel, a flashlight with extra batteries, ice scraper, extra warm clothing, warning devices (flares, triangles), basic toolkit, and a radio
    • Tell friends or family where you're going if you have to get out and travel
  • Wear many layers if you'll be outside
  • Work slowly if performing chores outside
  • At home, open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing.
    • Be sure to move any harmful cleaners and household chemicals up out of the reach of children.
  • Let cold water drip from faucets served by exposed pipes. Running water through the pipe - even at a trickle - helps prevent pipes from freezing.
  • Keep the thermostat set to the same temperature both during the day and at night. By temporarily suspending the use of lower nighttime temperatures, you may incur a higher heating bill, but you can prevent a much more costly repair job if pipes freeze and burst.

MORE | Read more tips from the CDC | Read more tips from the American Red Cross

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