Navigating a winter storm safely

Yari Tapia, Reporter

With a winter storm warning issued by the National Weather Service for today and tomorrow in northern Illinois, it is important to remain calm and safe during these hazardous conditions. Here are some safety tips the Red Cross says to use to prepare for tonight’s winter storm.

Vehicle maintenance

It is helpful to keep a windshield scraper and a small broom to brush off snow. A small bag of sand could help generate traction under tires, according to a Red Cross press release. A set of traction mats or tire chains could help with traction as well. A bright colored cloth that can be tied to the antenna of the car for safety warning on the road. A supply of kitty litter that does not clump can be used to make walkways less slippery.

Keep the gas tank in the vehicle full, so that the fuel line does not freeze.

Home protection

Use caulk, windowsills or weatherstrips to insulate the home. To add another layer of insulation, cover windows with plastic from the inside. Make sure heating devices are working properly.

General safety

Listen to the radio or watch tv stations for updates on the snow storm. Bring animals inside, and be sure that livestock have enough blankets to remain warm, if any, according to the news release. To prevent hypothermia, wear a warm coat, gloves, hat and waterproof boots if going outside is inevitable.