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City urges residents to be prepared for extreme cold

January 18, 2019 –

Need a place to warm up?  Find one on this KFL&A Public Health page.

With extreme cold temperatures in the forecast, the City's office of emergency management encourages you to take proactive measures to ensure you and your family are prepared for these conditions.

They offer the following tips:

Dress for the weather.

It's important to stay warm during cold winter months. Community partner, KFL&A Public Health advises children and seniors to take precautions to avoid the effects of the cold, or stay indoors to avoid cold injuries when the temperature drops below -25°C or the wind chill is below -28°C.

If you do go out, wear several layers of clothing and make sure that the outer layer protects from wind and wetness. Cover exposed skin with hats, mittens, or a face mask to protect against frostbite and losing your body heat.

Learn more about the side effects of extreme cold

Help your neighbour!

During extreme weather, be sure to check-in on seniors and/or people with limited mobility to ensure their homes are warm and they have enough food. For vulnerable members of our community, emergency shelters are available. If you see someone who you believe is at-risk, please call 9-1-1.

Have a preparedness kit for your home and car.

Are you ready to meet the special needs of all household members including pets and children if you have to stay home up to 72 hours due to an emergency like an ice-storm? The City encourages all residents to have provisions set-aside for these situations.

For the home, these kits include bottled water, flashlights, battery-operated radio, batteries and chargers, first aid kit, non-perishable food items, and more. For a complete list, www.CityofKingston.ca/GetReady.

For the vehicle, your preparedness kit should include: a shovel, windshield scraper, battery powered radio, flashlight with batteries, water, snacks, extra hats, coats and mitts, blankets, chains or rope, sand or salt, booster cables, emergency flares, first aid kits, compass, matches stored in a waterproof contained and a brightly coloured cloth (preferably red) to tie to your vehicle's antenna.

Be aware of carbon monoxide.

In winter, take special care to ensure your outside exhaust vents are clear of snow and ice. If these become blocked, carbon monoxide has no place to escape and can build up in your home and cause severe illness or even death. For more safety tips connected to utilities, please consult Utilities Kingston's Tips to Stay Safe This Winter.

Avoid thin ice!

You cannot tell how strong ice is by its appearance alone. Treat all ice covered watercourses as dangerous and take the necessary precautions: avoid slushy ice, thawed ice that has recently refrozen, ice near moving water and layered ice. Never go out on the ice by yourself. 

See more information about the City's Emergency Management Plan and tips