By RTH Staff
Published February 01, 2011
With a major winter storm headed our way, Hamilton Firefighters and Paramedics have issued a news release calling on Hamiltonians to follow these important safety tips:
Clear your sidewalks and walkways in a timely fashion to reduce injuries from slips and falls. Shovel snow and apply salt, sand or other ice melting material to keep the walkway passable.
Be aware of senior citizens or people with disabilities living in your neighbourhood, as winter conditions can be expecially hazardous.
If you have a fire hydrant in front of your property, be sure to dig it out so emergency crews can find and access it.
Watch for snow accumulation around exit doors. Ensure that all exterior passageways, stairways and fire escapes are free of snow and ice.
Clear direct vent pipes from furnaces and hot water heaters of accumulated snow. If a vent is blocked, the building can fill with dangerous levels of carbon monoxide gas.
Do not idle vehicles inside attached garages, as this can release dangerous levels of carbon monoxide into the building.
Be careful while shovelling. In addition to the risk of frostbite, injury and hypothermia, shovelling is a strenuous activity that can be very dangerous for people at risk of heart disease. If you are going to shovel, dress appropriately, warm up first, start slow, and take it easy. It is better to shovel early and often than to wait until snow is deep and heavily packed.
Hamilton Police Service has issued a reminder to drivers to drive slowly and safely in the upcoming winter storm.
In a news release issued today, Hamilton Police offer the following winter driving tips (in addition to the usual standbys obey the speed limit, wear a seatbelt and don't drink and drive):
Slow down. Speed limits are set for ideal driving conditions - when a storm reduces visibility and makes the road slippery, take it slow.
Expect the unexpected. Whiteouts, black ice and other hazards will materialize unexpectedly, so be prepared.
Do not tailgate. Increase your following distance to take road conditions and visibility into account.
Avoid aggressive drivers. If someone else isn't driving safely, just stay right out of their way.
Give yourself extra time to reach your destination. If you're running late, you will be more tempted to drive at an unsafe speed.
Check weather reports on your planned route so you know what to expect.
Finally, don't drive when you're too tired to pay close attention to rapidly-changing road conditions.
Beyond that, make sure your car is well maintained, your lights and horn work, your fluids are topped up and your vehicle is clear of snow and ice before driving.
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