Tips for winter house and car preparation

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FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) Governor Mike Pence declared next week ‘Winter Weather Preparedness Week’ to encourage Hoosiers to take steps to prepare for the upcoming winter. The governor’s office prepared a list of tips for people to ready their home and their car for the cold weather. November 19 is the average day for the first measurable snow fall in Indiana. However, this year, snowfall came early.

The following are the governor’s tips for readying a home for the winter:

  • Homeowner’s insurance policy should be reviewed to ensure coverage is adequate for the type of weather that regularly occurs in the area. Identify what is excluded from the policy.
  • Remove dead branches from nearby trees. The added weight of ice and snow, along with winds, may cause limbs to snap and damage property.
  • Clean gutters now before snow and ice build-up. If gutters are clogged while ice and snow are thawing, water can back up under the roof and eaves, causing water damage inside the house. Consider buying screens to keep gutters debris-free.
  • Many fires related to alternative heating sources (wood stoves, fireplaces, space heaters) are preventable and caused by poor maintenance. Keep alternative heat sources away from flammable material. Before installing a wood-burning stove, check with local officials about codes and proper installation techniques.

The following are the governor’s tips for keeping a car ready for the cold:

  • At least two blankets or a sleeping bag
  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • Jumper cables
  • Emergency flares
  • Extra clothing, including boots, hats and gloves
  • Shovel
  • Bottled water and non-perishable food
  • First aid kit and necessary medication
  • Sand or non-clumping cat litter for tire traction
  • Cell phone and charger for vehicle use
  • Ice scraper and snow brush

The governor’s office reminds people to leave extra time to drive during winter. City, County and State police should not be used to check road conditions. Anyone who wants Indiana Travel information, including road conditions, road closures, crashes and other traffic alerts should use the toll-free number 1-800-261-ROAD or 1-800-261- 7623.
Hoosiers can also find the Indiana Travel Advisory Map here. The information on the map is updated by county emergency management agencies in real time.

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