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How to Prepare for a Blizzard

blizzard winter storm

Hazardous snow and ice can hit from October into April in many parts of the country. Being prepared means having what you need at home, and staying there when possible. If you must leave home, an emergency preparedness kit for your vehicle is essential.

Blizzards, with their extreme winter weather conditions, can pose significant dangers. To stay safe during a blizzard, it’s crucial to be prepared. In this article, we will explore essential steps and supplies needed for blizzard preparedness, along with what to do before, during, and after a blizzard hits.

What to Do Before, During, and After a Blizzard?

Before a Blizzard:

  • Create an Emergency Kit: Assemble a supply kit that includes non-perishable food, water, a flashlight, batteries, a first-aid kit, warm clothing, blankets, and essential medications.
  • Secure Your Home: Ensure your home is well-insulated and that doors and windows are sealed to prevent drafts. Have a backup heating source, such as a generator or a wood-burning stove, in case of power outages.
  • Stay Informed: Keep a battery-powered weather radio or a smartphone with a weather app to receive updates and stay informed about the blizzard winter storm’s progress.

During a Blizzard:

  • Stay Indoors: Once the blizzard hits, stay indoors. Only venture out if it’s absolutely necessary.
  • Conserve Heat: Keep your home warm by closing off unneeded rooms, covering windows with blankets, and using space heaters cautiously.
  • Dress Warmly: Wear multiple layers of clothing to retain body heat. Use hats, gloves, and scarves to protect extremities.

After a Blizzard:

  • Check on Neighbors: After the storm subsides, check on neighbors, especially the elderly and those with special needs, to ensure they are safe.
  • Clear Snow Safely: If you must shovel snow, do so carefully and avoid overexertion. Take frequent breaks and use proper lifting techniques.

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Preparing For A Blizzard

What You Need at Home?

These blizzard safety tips will keep you safe and ready in your home.

  • Check the weather forecast daily, so you’ll know when blizzard conditions are expected
  • Shop ahead of time to have 3-5 days of non-perishable food on hand plus enough bottled water for one gallon per day per person
  • Place flashlights with fresh batteries in several locations where they can be easily reached if you lose power in the dark
  • Keep a battery-powered or hand-cranked radio on hand to listen to emergency weather information
  • Keep your mobile phone battery fully charged for maximum life in a power outage, and if you do lose power, use the phone only for necessary calls
  • Have a 5 to 7-day supply on hand of required prescription medications
  • If you have a fireplace, have a supply of wood on hand
  • If you do not have a fireplace, consider having an alternate method of heating such as a kerosene or propane heater approved for indoor use
  • Stock up on baby supplies including food and diapers
  • Ditto for pet supplies, and bring outdoor pets indoors

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What You Need Outside?

The Red Cross staying indoors during severe weather, but if you must go outside your home, these tips will help.

  • Wear warm clothing including gloves, a hat, and a scarf. Exposed skin can become frost-bitten in just a few minutes in extreme cold and wind.
  • If pets go out with you, keep them on leashes because they can become disoriented quickly in blizzard conditions and wander into roadways or get lost and perish without shelter
  • When icy conditions are present, have an effective traction product on hand. Salt-based and non-salt ice melt products are one option, but they work slowly and are not effective in extreme cold. A better choice is Traction Magic, a traction agent you can apply to any surface at any temperature. It is ideal for slick steps and walkways.

What You Need in Your Car?

See the list below for items to have in a vehicle emergency kit.

First, though, have your vehicle serviced before bad weather hits. Make sure the brake pads and tires are in good condition and have plenty of life left. Ask your mechanic to check all fluid levels including antifreeze and brake fluid. Replace headlamps and hazard lights that aren’t working. Install a fresh set of wiper blades, if needed. Finally, keep your vehicle’s gas tank full or near full.

The US government site recommends minimizing travel. If you must venture out on the road, keep an emergency kit in your vehicle with these supplies:

  • Two days worth of food and water
  • Full-charged phone and charger
  • Heavy winter clothing and blankets
  • Medical prescriptions
  • Chemical hand/feet warmers
  • Flashlights with fresh batteries
  • First Aid kit
  • Battery jumper cables
  • Durable shovel
  • Emergency flares or lights
  • Roadmaps
  • Fluorescent distress flag
  • Tow chain or rope

Whether you are prepared for a blizzard can be the difference between staying safe and experiencing dangerous situations or long delays waiting for help. These winter storm tips will help you prepare for extreme weather this season.

During a blizzard, icy conditions can pose significant risks. ‘Traction Magic‘ is a natural volcanic rock-based product that provides instant traction on ice. It’s a safe and effective way to prevent slips and falls on icy surfaces, ensuring your safety during extreme winter weather.



A. During a blizzard, there are several things you should avoid:

  • Don’t Travel: It’s highly advisable not to travel during adverse blizzard weather conditions unless it’s an absolute emergency. Poor visibility and icy roads make driving treacherous.
  • Avoid Overexertion: Shoveling snow or engaging in strenuous activities during a blizzard can lead to exhaustion and potentially harmful health issues.
  • Don’t Ignore Warnings: Pay attention to weather alerts and official warnings. Ignoring them can be dangerous.

A. Blizzards, as natural weather phenomena, cannot be prevented. However, accurate weather forecasting and timely communication of warnings help people prepare and stay safe during these events.

A. To prepare for a blizzard, you will need:

  • Emergency food and water: Non-perishable items that can sustain you and your family for at least 72 hours.
  • A heat source: Extra blankets, warm clothing, and portable heaters or a generator if possible.
  • Communication: A battery-powered weather radio or a smartphone with weather apps.
  • First-aid kit: Basic medical supplies for any injuries.
  • Snow removal tools: Shovels and snow blowers for clearing pathways.

A. To prepare your home for a blizzard:

  • Insulate your home properly to keep warmth in and cold air out.
  • Seal any gaps around doors and windows to prevent drafts.
  • Stock up on essential supplies, including food, water, batteries, and flashlights.
  • Ensure you have enough heating fuel for an extended period.
  • Have a family emergency plan in place and discuss it with all family members.

A. Yes, ‘Traction Magic’ is effective in icy conditions, including those during blizzards, providing enhanced traction for safe walking and driving.

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