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Record breaking freezing temperature: Winter hazards to be aware of

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The temperatures outside have been plummeting down at record breaking speed. With the cold, wind and below zero degrees showing on the thermometers there are many things that people should consider besides trying to keep warm and remaining indoors.

Your home is the next the next thing to take into consideration as the mercury dips down to single digits and negative numbers. According to a news report on Jan. 6 from WAVY the freezing temperatures can greatly affect your house plumbing. There are many simple things you can do to protect your home.

The paper in Alabama also has some wonderful tips reported for residents to consider during these freezing temperatures. The news on Jan. 5 by AL.com tells residents of Mobile that the temperature can drop to thirteen degrees. If this occurs it will shatter the record already documents. Some of their tips include safety and precautionary measure dealing with plants, shelter, schools, travel and of course safety.

Tips for protecting pipes from freezing:

Did you know a trickle of water from a faucet can prevent pipes from freezing? It’s true, but not all the time. Opening the faucet just ever so slightly will alleviate the pressure within the pipes preventing them from bursting.

Pipes usually burst when temperatures drop to subfreezing numbers. Insulating pipes that are outside, in crawl spaces, or in unheated attics is a something to consider. Once done, you’ll no longer have to worry about those areas year after year.

It is a good idea to disconnect garden hoses and drain any pipes that are located outdoors.

Turn the water off with the shut-off valve if your pipes do burst from freezing in order to prevent flooding within your home.

Know where buckets, mops and rags are located so you are prepared to soak up water from pipes that have thawed and leased into your home.

Prevent hypothermia:

Avoid getting your clothes wet and going outdoors. Wet clothes or wet skin can increase your chances of getting hypothermic especially for children and elderly.

Dress in multiple layers that are thin to help insulate your muscles.

Wear hats and wind-resistant coats to prevent the cold from passing through the material penetrating into your muscles.

Miscellaneous tips that shouldn’t be ignored:

Always keep your gas tank at least half full if not full during cold, winter and when the temperature are freezing. Sometimes there may be water in your gas tank caused by inexpensive gasoline. When the tank gets really low, that water can freeze and crack your gas tank and gas lines.

Keep all fluids in the car filled such as steering fluid, brake fluid, oil and antifreeze to keep all areas lubricated properly.

Tips for pets when the weather is frightful:

Avoid sending pets outside if at all possible. If they have to go out put them on a leash and make the trip as short as possible.

Place knitted coats on your pets. And if you have booties, put them on them too, don’t worry about them looking silly, they will appreciate not having frozen paws or snow stuck to their fur. The rock salt and calcium that is spread on the roads is harmful to your pet. The first thing they will do when they come in from the cold is find a warm place to lie down and lick their paws.

Keep all pets away from antifreeze. This is poisonous. The ethylene glycol has a sweet taste to animals that they seem to find irresistible. One tablespoon of antifreeze can poison a cat and just a few licks from a dog can poison them too.

Pets will show signs of antifreeze poisoning within twenty-four to thirty-six hours after digesting just a little. Your pets will be very thirsty and drink lots of water and act as if they were drunk. If you notice these signs rush them to the seminarian nearest your home as soon as possible so they can get the medical attention they need immediately.

Keep alert, warm and protect your home during this record breaking freeze!

© 2014 Beverly Mucha / All Rights Reserved

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