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Tips: Prepare For A Winter Storm

Remember, we are in Michigan and our weather can change without much notice.  Heavy snow, extreme cold, ice and wind routinely affect Michigan during winter and pose dangers to life and property.

Michigan winters can be severe, so preparedness, awareness and common sense are always important. State authorities encourages residents to learn of the dangers associated with cold, snow and ice, as well as threats posed by the use of heat sources such as wood burning stoves, fireplaces and space heaters. Being prepared for weather emergencies can make a situation tolerable, rather than hazardous or deadly.

To prepare for a winter storm, the Michigan State Police Brighton Post offered the following tips:


1. If you don't have to drive somewhere – don't. 
2. If you must drive for emergency reasons – be prepared incase your vehicle becomes stuck or incapacitated.
a. Wear warm clothes
b. Put a blanket(s) in the car incase you need them
c. Have food/water in the car
d. First-aid kit
e. Cellular telephone is charged
3. If you become stuck and your vehicle still runs, be very careful regarding carbon monoxide poisoning.
a. If you need to run the car for heat – only do it for short periods of time.
i. Extended running of vehicles while stuck in snow banks can cause carbon monoxide build up in the car which can lead to death.
4. While driving give yourself ample response distance between vehicles.
5. Travel at a speed that is safe and using due care and caution for the road conditions.


1. Stock up on needed items – before the storm arrives
2. Be prepared for a possible power outage.
a. Fuel for generator and snow blower
3. Have enough food for at least a few days
a. Remember, electricity may be out, so be able to cook without electricity if needed.
b. Or have meal plans that do not require cooking
4. Fill up water containers, incase of power outage
5. Make sure you have enough precription medications to last a few days
6. Cellular telephone is charged
7. Portable radio for news/weather reports
8. Batteries for flashlights/radios and other battery operated devices
9. Using space heaters indoors can be very dangerous without proper ventalation by causing carbon monoxide poisoning.

**If you know or have a neighbor who may be in need – check on them to make sure they are doing okay.

For more information on how to prepare for severe weather, visit the Michigan Committee for Severe Weather Awareness website.

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