Governor Phil Scott Encourages Caution During Winter Storm
Montpelier, Vt. – Most of Vermont is seeing a mix of wind, sleet, freezing rain and snow today and those conditions are forecasted to continue into Tuesday, December 31. These conditions are expected to create several hazards throughout the state.
State and local highway crews will be working diligently to keep roads safe, but roads are likely to be slippery Monday and Tuesday. Motorists are advised to slow down, drive with extreme caution and determine if travel is necessary before heading out. Sidewalks and other surfaces will also be hazardous to pedestrians.
Icing on trees and expected winds could create widespread power outages. Vermont’s utilities have been preparing for this storm and some have arranged for extra crews to restore service as quickly as possible.
“Responders, road crews, utilities and many others have been planning for this storm and are working hard to minimize impacts and keep people safe,” said Governor Phil Scott. “Individuals can assist by helping themselves and others. The most important thing we can ask of Vermonters is to check in on neighbors and exercise common sense and caution.”
Vermonters are advised to stay away from all downed lines or trees and to be sure debris is not in contact with a power line before clearing.
Additional safety tips:
- Check flashlights and portable radios to ensure that they are working and have extra batteries. A radio is an important source of weather and emergency information during a storm.
- If utilizing an emergency generator, read, understand and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Always operate emergency generators outdoors and away from any open windows or doors as generator exhaust can cause a buildup of deadly carbon monoxide in living areas. Ensure that your carbon monoxide detectors are working correctly and have fresh batteries.
- Check your outside heating exhaust vents to ensure that they are clear of snow and ice.
- Set your refrigerator and freezer to their coldest settings and do not open during an outage. Food can stay cold in a full refrigerator for up to 24 hours and in a well-packed freezer for 48 hours (24 hours if it is half-packed). If you have medication that requires refrigeration, check with your pharmacist for guidance on proper storage during an extended outage. And remember to reset your refrigerator and freezer to normal temperatures once power is restored.
- Make sure you have items like flashlights, a portable radio, extra batteries, a first aid kit, bottled water, non-perishable food and a manual can opener on hand in case of extended outages.
- For weather, road, emergency and other alerts delivered directly to your phone or email, sign up for Vermont Alert. You can register for the free service at www.vtalert.gov.
- Follow Vermont Emergency Management on Facebook and Twitter or at www.vem.vermont.gov/preparedness.
- Follow the Vermont Agency of Transportation on Facebook and Twitter or at vtrans.vermont.gov/emergency and www.newengland511.org.
- Follow the National Weather Service at NWS Albany on Facebook and Twitter or NWS Burlington on Facebook and Twitter.