With the latest snow storm in the Portland, Oregon area, I saw how un-prepared Portlander's really are. With the pile up of cars on the side of the road, the long lines the local grocery store and people taking to the streets to walk due to a failure to plan. This storm was predicted and they still didn't prepare. You have to ask yourself are you prepared?
Getting your car prepared for winter weather should start in November! Start by getting your car winter-ready by bringing the routine service up to date. Plan on getting Studded Snow Tires (Approved in Oregon and Washington), Tire Chains, Road Flares, Hand Warmers, Blanket or Sleeping Bag (For Warmth), Water, Snacks, Window De-Icer (Prestone Windshield De-Icer), Yaktrax (Traction for your shoes-Yaktrax),
Extra Jacket, Hat and Gloves. All of these items can be in your trunk in a Plano 56Qt HD Storage Tote (Sportsman Warehouse). Add other items that you feel would be helpful for your personal preparedness.
November is a great time to stock up on supplies for your home as well. You will need to stock up on food, water and heat for yourself, family and your animals and any unprepared neighbors. It is especially important to check on elderly neighbors to insure they are doing well. Places like Costco, Cash & Carry and Dollar Tree are great stores to buy in bulk and will save you $$ in the long run. We also have freeze dried food which has a shelf live of 25 years or more (Honeyville). Buy some extra Animal Food so you have it available in case you can't get to the store. We also have (5)15 gallon water storage containers (Reliance Aqua-Tainer). Waiting until the event happens is to late to get prepared, avoid the panic and get prepared now!
Once a winter storm rolls in you may arrive home to find a few inches or feet of snow. As soon as the snow stops, get out and start shoveling your sidewalk and driveway. Starting clearing your walkway and driveway early and frequently will make your life much easier. Here are a few additional items to think about having at your home. We think the Orchard ABS Scoop Shovel (Orchard Supply Hardware) is the BEST shovel for snow removal. We own 3 of these shovels. The large D-handle is comfortable to hold and the big scoop lifts plenty of snow. During the last snow storm we were the only ones in our neighborhood that had a clear driveway! Ice Melt is another must for your home as you are responsible if someone slips and falls on your driveway or sidewalk in front of your home. (ULine) The best way to spread Ice Melt is with a hand-held fertilizer spreader.
Generators are another useful item to have at home in case the power goes out. With a gas generator and a transfer switch (installed by licensed electrician), you will be able to run your refrigerator, essential lights and small heater. This time of year, you never know when the power might go out! Staying warm can save your life. Extra gas for the generator and your car will keep you moving and warm through out the winter months. Remember to run your generator in a safe open air location!
Another great idea, is to have extra medications, prescription glasses and cash (Small Bills) on hand in case of emergency.
Don't wait until the next disaster to get prepared!