Pitt County offering winter season preparation tips

PITT COUNTY, N.C. (WITN) – Pitt County Emergency Management is urging county residents and eastern North Carolinians to prepare for the winter weather season that is approaching.

Pitt County’s Winter Weather Preparedness Week, December 3-9, is a time when people can update their emergency plans and restock their supply kits.

“Winter weather in North Carolina can be difficult to predict, so the message is always to have a plan. Now is the time to make a plan and prepare so that families can weather winter storms. For more information, go to ready.gov and readync.gov,” says Randy Gentry, emergency management director.

The following tips were given on how to prepare for or act during the winter season:

  • Keep alternative heating sources prepared. If you have a fireplace, store plenty of dry, seasoned wood and keep fire extinguishers on hand.
  • Properly vent kerosene heaters and keep any electric generators outside and away from any open windows or doors to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning. Do not burn charcoal indoors as carbon monoxide poisoning can result from the fumes.
  • Keep new batteries on hand to use with flashlights and weather radios.
  • Always keep at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food and water in your home.
  • Wear multiple layers of thin clothing instead of a single layer of thick clothing to stay warm.
  • If you must travel during a winter storm, store an emergency kit in your vehicle that includes blankets, battery-powered radio with extra batteries, first aid kit, flashlight with extra batteries, battery booster cables and flares, tire repair kit and pump, road map, sack of cat litter (for tire traction), tow rope, bottled water and non-perishable high-energy foods, extra clothing to keep dry and a windshield scraper and brush.
  • If driving on snow- or ice-covered roadways, reduce your speed and leave plenty of room between you and other vehicles.
  • If conditions worsen and you can no longer drive safely, pull off the highway. Stay calm and remain in your vehicle. Do not set out on foot unless you can clearly see a building where you can take shelter.

The county reports that most deaths attributed to winter are caused by indirect dangers like damages to power lines, house fires, and carbon monoxide poisoning from improper use of grills, space heaters, and stoves.

Graphics and tips will be posted to their Facebook throughout the week.

For more information, call emergency management at (252) 902-3950.