During the winter months in USA and Canada, one must also be aware of and prepare for the harshness of winter. In fact, the winter climate in USA and Canada is one of the harshest in the world, and the region is very susceptible to extreme cold and snowfall.
Winter storms can cause:
- high winds and dangerous wind chill which can cause injury and even death - high winds combined with cold temperatures can have serious health effects such as frostbite or hypothermia;
- deaths from traffic accidents, fires or carbon monoxide poisoning - snow and ice can build up and cause road closures or isolate residents and cut off access to services essential;
- a build-up of snow and ice, which can also cause roofs to collapse or knock down trees and power lines, leading to blackouts and loss of home heating.
In the event of a severe winter storm, follow the advice below:
- Avoid unnecessary travel.
- Wear several layers of light clothing, mittens and a hat.
- Wear waterproof, insulated boots that will keep your feet warm and dry and prevent you from slipping on ice or snow.
- When you are outside, check your skin regularly for numbness or white patches on your face or elsewhere on the body.
- Arrange your home for the winter to keep the heat inside.
- Make sure the heaters in your home are in good condition and that the exhaust pipes are not blocked by snow.
- Install storm windows or cover windows with plastic wrap.
- Add extra blankets and warm clothes to your emergency kit.