At home, on the move, in the workplace or in our communities, we all need to consider the risk of severe weather, which can occur at any time of year, but is most likely during the winter months.
Are you ready to deal with the problems which snow, ice, storms and floods can bring?
Doing a few small things now could save you a lot of trouble later, and it only takes a few simple steps.
Make sure your home is as energy efficient as possible. Protect water pipes from freezing, and know how to find the stop valve for your water supply.
Keep at least three days’ supply of food, bottled water and other essentials, including medicines, and tinned and dry foods which store safely without need for electricity. Keep a battery operated radio in the house to help stay connected to news and information.
Write down important telephone numbers, and try to get a corded (old-style) phone which will continue to work even when the power goes off.
Make the most of social media to help overcome problems during periods of severe weather.
Follow us on Twitter at @argyllandbute
Make a household plan and collect together an emergency kit which will help you, whether you have to stay home or leave your house. Put it in a safe place which you can reach quickly, in a sturdy waterproof bag.
- Battery or wind-up radio and spare batteries
- First aid kit and essential medicines
- Important documents - insurance policies/driving license/birth certificates
- Bottled water/tinned/packet food/milk formula or baby food
- Spare keys to home and car
- Spare glasses or contact lenses
- Pen or pencil and paper, penknife, whistle
- Mobile phone and important numbers
- Shovel or snow clearer
- Warm footwear with good gripping soles
- Pet food
In the community
You and your neighbours can get together to minimise the effects of severe weather.
In previous severe winters some people have been caught out and a little planning can be a big help:
- Identify family or neighbours who may need an extra helping hand if severe weather strikes
- Have their phone numbers to hand
- Offer to help with grocery shopping or other essential tasks
- Clear ice or snow from your pathway. There is no legal problem with clearing your own paths, driveways, and pavements, but be mindful of your own safety, health issues, and limitations.
- Ice can make things just as difficult as deep snow for some people to move about
- Your community can get prepared for severe weather by agreeing what you, your neighbours can do to reduce the effects of severe weather on vulnerable neighbours
The service disruptions page is the base place to go for up to date service disruption information.
This information is also available on digital
television at Sky community channel 539 -
press the red button.
On the road
If you have a long journey to make on public transport, dress for the season and forecast and have a means of contacting your family in case of delays. For a long journey, carry a small snack and some water if possible.
Check out Traveline by calling 0871 200 22 33 to see if there are any delays or disruptions to services.
In your own vehicle
- Keep your vehicle in good condition at all times and follow this checklist before you go out
- All lights clean and working, washer bottle full (use a high concentration of screenwash)
- Clean mirrors and windows inside and out
- Keep tyres at the right pressure with plenty of tread
- Consider fitting winter tyres
- Keep the battery fully charged and topped up
- Watch the weather forecast, use gritted roads, look at the map overleaf
- Tell someone at your destination what time you expect to arrive
- Don’t use your mobile phone while driving. Stop somewhere safe or ask a passenger to make the call
Your winter travel survival kit
You can’t always avoid bad weather, but if you have to make a journey in difficult conditions then it pays to be prepared all year round.
Carry an emergency kit in your car:
- warm clothes, boots and a blanket
- fully charged mobile phone
- a hot drink in a flask
- energy boosting food
- a pen or pencil
- a first aid kit
- a torch
- an ice-scraper
- a map for any unplanned diversions
- a shovel for snow
- If possible include a tow rope, some sand and a solid wooden board for the jack.
If you have to leave your vehicle to get help, make sure other drivers can see your car and that you are visible at the side of the road.