The South Carolina Emergency Management Division asks residents to prepare themselves and their homes for possible winter weather. The National Weather Service predicts the possibility of snow, freezing rain and ice accumulations in much of the state lasting into Saturday.
“South Carolina is expected to experience winter storm weather again this week,” said Governor Henry McMaster. “Those in potentially impacted areas should begin safety preparations now. Please check your local forecasts and stay off the roads unless absolutely necessary once the storm begins.”
State and local agencies are putting emergency plans in place for winter weather and urge everyone in South Carolina to consider preparations to keep your home, community, family, vehicles and pets safe.
“This next winter storm is expected to impact much of the state that wasn’t affected by last weekend’s storm, possibly more,” SCEMD Director Kim Stenson said. “Everyone should expect power outages and dangerous road conditions. Make sure your home and your family are as prepared as possible, and be sure to check on anyone you know who may need a little extra help staying safe and warm this weekend.”
Prepare for the possibilities of power outages and dangerous road conditions.
Every household should have an emergency preparedness plan in place. Start by posting emergency contact information in a common area like by the refrigerator. Include contact information such as websites and phone numbers for utility companies and emergency responders.
Check your local weather forecasts frequently as conditions change. Follow official, verified sources of emergency information online. Listen to a NOAA Weather Radio and local media for updates. Be prepared to take additional safety precautions if advised to do so by local public safety officials.
Once ice begins to accumulate on bridges, overpasses and secondary streets, travel may become treacherous. If you are on the roadway, drive slowly, watch for black ice and down trees. Heed any warnings to stay off the roads.
Your plan should include a winter weather supplies kit that can be put together easily, including the following items:
- Flashlights and extra batteries
- Extra chargers for your cell phones and mobile devices to keep them at a full charge
- Battery-powered NOAA weather radio
- Extra food and water, such as non-perishable/high-energy foods and snacks
- Extra medication
- Extra baby items if you have infants or small children
- Basic First-Aid supplies
- Blankets, sleeping bags and extra clothing for warmth
- Gather and store extra firewood in a dry sheltered area
- Pet food and items to keep your animals protected from winter conditions
If you lose power and decide to use a portable generator, remember to keep the generator outside and at a safe distance away from the house. Never use generators inside a basement or garage. The generator should be placed outside in a well-ventilated area. Use only the amount of power necessary to maintain essential appliances and lights.
Avoid contact with down power lines. If you lose power, don’t go outside in the dark to investigate. Contact with an energized electrical line may cause severe injury or even death. All down utility lines should be considered “live.” Report downed power lines to the fire department and the appropriate utility company.
The S.C. Severe Winter Weather Guide is available for download at scemd.org and in the SC Emergency Manager mobile app for Apple and Android.