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Preparing for a Winter Storm in Vienna

Vienna (22180, 22181, 22182) is expecting a winter storm Wednesday. Here's how to stay warm and dry, even if you lose power.

With Vienna under a winter storm watch and snow possible from Tuesday evening through Wednesday evening, here are some things you need to know:

  • Read: Vienna Under Winter Storm Watch

Much more information about emergency preparedness is available at www.vaemergency.gov/ReadyVirginia and on Fairfax County's emergency blog.

The Town of Vienna also updates its website throughout storms. 

Here are some tips to take into consideration before Tuesday night:

If you have a generator, make sure it is working properly and you understand how to use it safely. Do not use a generator indoors.

When was the last time your chimney was cleaned or inspected? If you aren’t sure or can’t remember ever having it done, think twice before you build a fire in your fireplace—built up creosote, a malfunctioning flue or other structural problems could cause a fire in your attic or cause your home to fill with smoke.

Think warm: Make sure you have plenty of clean, warm blankets, clothes, socks and waterproof outer layers. For some homes, losing electricity means losing heat.

Make sure you have plenty of non-perishable or canned food (and a can opener), clean, bottled water several days, flashlights, a radio and batteries.

Talk to your local vet or pet shelter about emergency plans for pets, or make sure your own evacuation plans include accommodations for your four-legged family members.

  • Read: Tips on Driving in the Snow in Vienna (When You Have to)

Have a central meeting place for your family if you have to leave your home, and make sure everyone has emergency phone numbers for each other and for relatives outside the disaster area.

If you do lose heat...

Do not use your stove to warm the house. This frequently leads to fires.

Keep an eye on any candles burning in your home.

Never use a charcoal or gas grill indoors for food or heat. Your home can fill with carbon monoxide.

Earlier this winter, two deaths in the Boston area were tied to carbon monoxide build-up in vehicles. Do not leave your car running either in your garage or outside (unless you’re very sure the exhaust pipe has a wide clearance area around it that is free of snow, ice and other obstructions).

Purchase rock salt or some type of environmentally-safe product to melt ice on your front stairs and sidewalks. The Environmental Protection Agency website has a list of recommended products. Sand may also be helpful.

Make sure that snow shovels and other snow removal equipment are in a convenient place and ready to use if necessary.

Keep up with the storm by following @ViennaPatch on Twitter and fan Vienna Patch on Facebook.

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