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Organizations Partner to Encourage their Communities to Proactively Plan for Winter Weather
December 3, 2020
Hampton, NH

In light of the impending frigid temperatures and snow-filled forecasts, the American Red Cross and Unitil, a provider of natural gas and electricity to customers throughout New England, are encouraging residents to prepare for potential weather-related emergencies this winter. Freezing rain, heavy snow and gusty winds can create unsafe conditions. Early preparation can help residents keep their families and properties safe during the winter months, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Now more than ever, proactive planning is imperative. It is crucial to ensure that all resources are arranged ahead of time. While New England weather is unpredictable, we are happy to provide a few tips to help New England residents ensure they’re winter ready.

Media Relations Manager, Alec O’Meara

As winter weather arrives, the American Red Cross and Unitil advise residents to take the following steps to prepare for the season:

Assemble an Emergency Preparedness Kit: Pack a winter-specific supply kit that includes a warm coat, hat, mittens or gloves, and water-resistant boots, along with extra blankets and extra warm clothing. Sand or non-clumping kitty litter is good to have on hand to help make walkways or steps less slippery. Additionally, make sure you have a first aid kit and essential medications, canned food and can opener, bottled water, flashlights and a battery-powered radio with extra batteries in your home in the event of a power outage.

Prepare Your Home and Car: Winterize your vehicle and keep the gas tank full, which will help to keep the fuel line from freezing. Make sure your home is properly insulated by installing storm windows or covering windows with plastic from the inside to help keep cold air out. Maintain heating equipment and chimneys by having them cleaned and inspected every year. Open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing. Running water, even at a trickle, helps to prevent pipes from freezing.

Protect Your Gas Meter: Remove snow and ice from a meter or outdoor appliance vent carefully with a broom. Avoid shoveling or plowing snow up against or covering the meter or pipe. Remove icicles from overhead eaves and gutters to assure dripping water does not freeze the meter or vent pipe. If you cannot reach icicles on your own, contact a qualified roofing vendor. Blocked meters and vents can cause a dangerous buildup of carbon monoxide gas in a home or business. Therefore, it is crucial to know where your vents are and to ensure they don’t become covered.

Take Notice of Storm Warnings: A winter storm WATCH means winter storm conditions are possible within the next 36 to 48 hours. People in a watch area should review their winter storm plans and stay informed about weather conditions via NOAA Weather radio, or local radio or television stations. A winter storm WARNING means that life-threatening, severe winter conditions have begun or will begin within 24 hours. Individuals in a warning area should take precautions immediately. 

"Adhering to these safety tips will ensure your family is safe all winter long,” said Stephanie Couturier, CEO, American Red Cross Northern New England Region. “Wishing you a happy, healthy and safe winter.”


About the American Red Cross

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.

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About Unitil Corporation

Unitil Corporation provides energy for life by safely and reliably delivering natural gas and electricity in New England. We are committed to the communities we serve and to developing people, business practices, and technologies that lead to the delivery of dependable, more efficient energy. Unitil Corporation is a public utility holding company with operations in Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts. Together, Unitil’s operating utilities serve approximately 107,100 electric customers and 85,600 natural gas customers. For more information about our people, technologies, and community involvement please visit https://unitil.com.


For more information please contact:
Alec O'Meara

Media Relations Manager
OMeara@unitil.com
Phone: 603-773-6404

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