Cold Weather Preparedness

Code Blue Weather Emergency Declaration means that temperatures or wind chill is expected to be below 20 degrees Fahrenheit. 

If you see someone in need of immediate emergency assistance, call or text 9-1-1.  If you or someone you know needs help with temporary shelter from the cold weather or a longer-term housing issue, call Your Way Home at 2-1-1 or text 898-211.

Safety Tips for Extreme Cold

  • Minimize travel.  Stay indoors during the worst part of the extreme cold.  During extreme cold, dress in warm layers if you need to venture outside.
  • Check on the elderly to make sure their homes are adequately heated.
  • Bring pets inside / limit their exposure to extreme temperatures outdoors.
  • When heating your home from a fireplace, wood stove, space heater, etc., remember to properly ventilate to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning. Carbon monoxide gas is colorless, odorless, and tasteless.  Check smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.
  • Learn how to shut off water valves for potential pipe bursts.
  • Keep a winter survival kit in your vehicle if you must travel (see below).  Check tire pressure, antifreeze levels, heater/defroster, etc.

Power Outages

  •  Report power outages directly to PECO at 1-800-494-4000 or report online here.
  • Only run generators outside in well-ventilated, dry areas; never in a home or attached garage.

If you have no heat:

  • Close off unneeded rooms. Stuff towels or rags in the cracks under doors.
  • Cover windows at night.
  • Eat food for energy and drink plenty of water.
  • Wear layers of loose-fitting, lightweight, and warm clothing.

Blizzards and Winter Storms

Plan ahead for winter traveling:

  • Keep your gas tank near full.
  • Let someone know where you are going, and when you should arrive.

If caught in a car or truck during a bad storm:

  • Stay in your car or truck; run the motor about ten minutes each hour for heat.  Exercise from time to time by moving arms, legs, fingers, and toes very fast to keep blood moving and to keep warm.
  • Open the window a little for fresh air to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.
  • Make sure the exhaust pipe is not blocked (with snow).
  • Make yourself visible to rescuers. Turn on the flashers and dome light at night when running the engine. Tie a colored cloth (preferably red) to your antenna or door.
  • Raise the hood to indicate trouble only after snow stops falling.
  • Have an emergency kit in your car or truck (see below).

Make a Winter Emergency Car Kit

  • Blankets/sleeping bags
  • High-calorie, nonperishable food/drinks
  • Water stored in clean plastic containers–one gallon per day per person for at least three days–for drinking/cleaning purposes
  • Shovel
  • Tow rope
  • Flashlight with extra batteries
  • Windshield scraper and brush
  • Booster cables (commonly known as jumper cables)
  • First-aid kit
  • Extra clothing in case you get wet
  • Utility knife
  • Tool kit
  • Duct tape
  • Bag of sand or cat litter in case your car or truck gets stuck in ice or snow
  • Compass and road maps
  • Books, puzzles, games for children
  • Extra medication
  • Spare cell phone charger