Storm Notes

by LonSeidman

Below are some suggestions for handling food, power and driving problems in a winter storm.

If there is a powerline down, STAY AWAY from it!

Report any powerlines down to CL&P online or call:

If the line is arcing or causing a fire, call 911. Again, stay away from the line and even snow near it as that can be charged as well.

Food
The Governor and CL&P are telling residents to be prepared to be in the dark for a ‘prolonged’ period of time. There are so many trees and lines down that cleaning up the mess will certainly take one to two weeks at minimum.

Yet, unlike during Hurricane Irene, there are some easier steps you can take to keep your food cold longer. Use the snow as an insulator – in plastic bags, or placing snow, ice, and food into a cooler. Keep the cooler outside overnight. Temperatures over the next few nights will be in the low-mid 20s. That is a very safe temperature, plus the cooler will keep that cold inside throughout most of the day.

Keeping an eye on blocks of ice can help you gauge what the temperature inside that cooler is. Yet, if you have any doubts about the safety of perishible foods – throw it out.

Driving

First, don’t venture out unless you absolutely need to. There are simply too many hazards in the road right now to put your life at risk. In fact, work should be called off except for emergency workers on Monday. Most towns in Central and Western Connecticut are without power.

If you must go out, remember the rules for drivnig in a power outage. If you come to an inoperable traffic light, drive defensively by assuming other drivers will plow through the intersection. Treat all traffic lights as stop signs and check before proceeding.

If you get stuck, don’t spin your tires. Instead, let up on the gas slowly until you gain traction. Alternatively, from a stop, press the accellerator slowly and move the wheel back and forth. If you feel your tires spin, let up on the gas. Remember, that less torque can result in better results. It also reduced the risk of gaining traction and being unable to top in time to avoid an obstacle.

if you find yourself in a skid, alternate your steering so that you can attempt to gain traction. Attempt to steer into any skids to regain control of your vehicle.

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