Myers particularly noted the increased danger of fire d […]
Myers particularly noted the increased danger of fire during storms, as people often turn to fireplaces or wood-pellet stoves to cook and keep warm when the power goes out. But major storms also increase the time it will take the department to respond to a fire or other emergency, he added.
“The sooner you call, the sooner we’re going to be able to get to you,” he said.
As for fire extinguishers, the chief recommended any extinguisher that’s stamped with a UL certification and rated for ABC (wood, oil, and electrical) fires.
When snow and debris fall in chimneys, there’s also an increased risk of carbon monoxide and smoke building up in homes, Myers noted. The fire department provides seniors free CO and smoke detectors for seniors through its annual budget, he added.
Should I stay or should I go?
“The other piece that’s really important is to be prepared with stuff,” said Epstein, an information officer with CERT. “You also want to have a go-bag,” she said. The bag should include basic necessities like bottled water and food — but sometimes personal items are important, too. “My number one item is peanut M&Ms,” said Lewis, who also keeps a backup hard drive containing all of her family photos in one of her go-bags.
Copies of important documents should also be ready to leave, CERT notes, including passports, insurance info, house and property deeds, and driver’s licenses. A digital backup of the documents on a phone or tablet is a good idea, the agency notes.