Taking precautionary steps to protect, yourself, your loved ones and your property could make a huge difference. Here are some tips to help you have a safe and happy winter:

*  Make sure to have your furnace cleaned annually as well as any fireplaces, woodstoves and chimneys . Hire a professional to do the cleaning and have them check to make sure that everything is in good working order.
*  Make sure that you have replaced your smoke detector batteries, and if needed replaced the detector itself. Smoke detectors should be hardwired with battery back up and  offer a CO detector.
*  Have your roof checked and gutters cleaned.
*  If your home is seasonal have a licensed plumber assist with the shut down to ensure that the water pipes are properly winterized and drained.
*  Have someone responsible for making weekly checks of the property when you will not be in town. Simple freeze alarms are also available  for those who do not winterize and drain pipes.
*  Make sure any fireplace fires are out before you go to sleep for the night.
*  Keep items at a safe distance from any furnace woodstove or fire place.

Suggested supplies to have on hand in preparation for a winter storm:

  • Battery powered radio
  • NOAA weather radio
  • Flashlights and lanterns, with spare batteries
  • Drinking water
  • Non-perishable food that doesn’t require cooking
  • Baby food and formula (if needed)
  • Pet food
  • Prescription medications
  • First aid kit
  • Rock salt (to melt snow on sidewalks and driveways)
  • Sand or cat litter (to make sidewalks and driveways safe to walk on)