Easton Emergency Management Storm Preparedness Safety Tips for Approaching Storm The Easton Emergency Management Team would like to provide the following information to residents to better prepare for an approaching storm. Before a Winter Storm Ensure that your Smoke and Carbon Monoxide (CO) detectors are working correctly and have fresh batteries. Check your outside fuel exhaust vents, making sure that they are not obstructed by snow or ice. Never use cooking equipment intended for outside use indoors as a heat source or cooking device. Ensure your Emergency Kit is stocked with supplies to enable you to survive on your own for at least three to five days. There should be a first-aid kit, essential prescription medicines, non-perishable foods (those that require no refrigeration such as canned goods, dried fruits and nuts), a manual can opener, water (one gallon per person, per day), flashlights and extra batteries along with a portable radio or NOAA Weather Radio, baby-care or pet supplies items, extra blankets, sleeping bags and a fire extinguisher. Ensure that your Winter Emergency Car Kit is well stocked to keep you and your vehicle safe. If a storm is coming that may bring power outages, fully charge your cell phone, laptop, and any other devices in advance of a power outage. Keep extra batteries for your phone in a safe place or purchase a solar-powered or hand crank charger. These chargers are good emergency tools to keep your laptop and other small electronics working in the event of a power outage. If you own a car, purchase a car phone charger because you can charge your phone if you lose power at your home. Take other preparations for Power Outages During Cold Weather. Download the free ping4alerts! app to your Smartphone to receive important weather alerts and messages from MEMA. Easy instructions are available at www.mass.gov/mema/mobileapp. Have your chimney flue checked for any buildup of creosote and cleaned if necessary to lessen the risk of fire. Have sufficient heating fuel, as regular sources may be cut off. Have the option of emergency heating equipment and fuel (a gas fireplace, wood burning stove or fireplace) so you can safely keep at least one room livable. Be sure the room is well ventilated. Know how to shut off water valves. If pipes freeze, remove insulation, completely open all faucets and pour hot water over the pipes, starting where they are most exposed to the cold. A hand-held hair dryer, used with caution, also works well. Do not use torches or other flame sources to thaw pipes as this cause fires. If you have medication that requires refrigeration, check with your pharmacist for guidance on proper storage during an extended outage. If you use medical equipment in your home that requires electricity, talk to your health care provider about how you can prepare for its use during a power outage. Ensure you have extra batteries for medical equipment and assistive devices. If you have life-support devices that depend on electricity, contact your local electric company about your power needs for life-support devices (home dialysis, suction, breathing machines, etc.) in advance of an emergency. Some utility companies will put you on a "priority reconnection service" list. Talk to your equipment suppliers about your power options and also let the fire department know that you are dependent on life-support devices. Keep your car tank at least half full because gas stations rely on electricity to power their pumps. Know where the manual release lever of your electric garage door opener is located and how to operate it. Garage doors can be heavy, so know that you may need help to lift it.