GREENE COUNTY — Greene County Public Health officials are offering safety tips for residents during the bitter cold.
Community members are advised to bundle up and keep pets inside, protect against fires and freezing pipes, and to always be prepared on the roadway. Here’s the list of tips that the American Red Cross and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) also suggest:
1. Layer up. Wear layers of lightweight clothing to stay warm. Gloves and a hat will help prevent losing your body heat. Limit your activity outdoors. Extreme frigid temperatures can cause frostbite in as little as 30 minutes.
2. Don’t forget your furry friends. Bring pets indoors. If they can’t come inside, make sure they have enough shelter to keep them warm and that they can get to unfrozen water.
3. Remember the three feet rule. If you are using a space heater, place it on a level, hard surface and keep anything flammable at least three feet away – things such as paper, clothing, bedding, curtains or rugs.
4. Supervision required – Turn off space heaters and make sure fireplace embers are out before leaving the room or going to bed.
5. Protect against fire. If you are using a fireplace, use a glass or metal fire screen large enough to catch sparks and rolling logs.
6. Protect your pipes. Run water, even at a trickle, to help prevent your pipes from freezing. Open the kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing. Be sure to move any harmful cleaners and household chemicals out of the reach of children. Keep the garage doors closed if there are water lines in the garage.
7. Better safe than sorry. Keep the thermostat at the same temperature day and night. Your heating bill may be a little higher, but you could avoid a more costly repair job if your pipes freeze and burst.
8. The kitchen is for cooking. Never use a stove or oven to heat your home.
9. Use generators outside. Never operate a generator inside the home, including in the basement or garage.
10. Knowledge is power. Don’t hook a generator up to the home’s wiring. The safest thing to do is to connect the equipment you want to power directly to the outlets on the generator.
11. Travel Safety: Keep your car filled with gas with fully inflated tires, and include an emergency safety kit that includes an ice scraper, blankets, an extra change of clothes and shoes, flares, a flashlight, extra batteries, some kitty litter or sand (for traction), some snacks, bottled water, cell phone, cell phone charger, and a first aid kit.
For more information, call GCPH at 937-374-5600.
Story courtesy of Greene County Public Health.