Preparing for Winter Storms

Indiana weather can be unpredictable, especially during the winter months. During winter, snow and ice often accumulate on power lines. The added weight may cause lines to snap off the poles or cause the poles to break. That can bring power lines into contact with the ground, trees, homes, vehicles, and other objects. If you see a downed power line, always assume it is energized and dangerous; avoid going near it and immediately notify the local authorities. Any contact with the lines can result in severe injury or even death.

In case of storms, here is some information that can help you prepare for some dangerous situations.

Develop a plan for prolonged power outages during these harsh months. Heavy snows, freezing rain, and ice storms can create electrical hazards that might confine residents to their homes.

Prepare a storm preparedness kit, fully stocked, with enough supplies for three days. The basic supplies in this kit should include:

  • Bottled water
  • Non-perishable food
  • Emergency blankets
  • First aid kit/medicine
  • Flashlight
  • Battery-operated or hand-crank radio
  • Extra batteries
  • Toiletries

During an outage, turn off and unplug all unnecessary electronics or appliances; this will keep equipment from being damaged by surges or spikes when the power returns. You can also safeguard electronics with surge protectors. Point-of-use surge protection devices protect the items directly plugged into them. This surge protector cannot stop the surge, but it instead diverts the surge to the ground, away from your electronic devices.