Group releases winter preparedness tips

LIMA — The Ohio Committee for Severe Weather Awareness has released a list of tips for residents to follow while preparing for the winter months.

•Prepare homes for winter — Remove and cut away dead and low-hanging tree branches. Freezing rain, heavy snow and gusting wind can cause those branches to break away and damage houses.

•Have emergency supply kits prepared for home and vehicles — Winter emergency kits should include: blankets, an extra set of winter attire, flashlights with extra batteries, first-aid kits, a cellphone with charger, a battery operated radio and/or weather radio and enough nonperishable food and water to sustain every household member for several days. Check the expiration dates on the nonperishable foods, water and medications. OCSWA suggests households have extra food, bottled water and pet supplies stored.

•Practice fire safety and prevention — Make certain the smoke detectors in the home are all working and test them monthly. Change the batteries in smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors twice a year. OCSWA suggests auxiliary heaters, furnaces and fireplaces checked and serviced before using.

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