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01/11/2019

Department of Health Offers Tips for Safety and Preparedness for Winter Storms

Harrisburg, PA – The Wolf Administration today urged residents to prioritize safety and take necessary precautions as snow is forecast for much of the commonwealth this weekend, particularly the southern half of the state.

“Residents should monitor the weather closely and prepare for the possibility of snow and freezing temperatures,” Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine said. “This weekend’s storm is a good reminder to be prepared. Make sure that you take steps to protect yourself if you must go outdoors, and have a preparedness kit in your vehicle.”

The current forecast predicts accumulating snow this weekend, with the highest amounts in the southern half of Pennsylvania.

“When it comes to ourselves, our families, our neighbors and even our pets, we should prioritize staying warm, dry and safe this weekend,” Dr. Levine said. “Hypothermia can occur at temperatures as high as 40 degrees, and any time winter weather takes aim at Pennsylvania, we should be aware of the risks of frostbite.”

Secretary Levine encouraged residents to stay indoors and, if possible, to avoid travel during winter storms. If residents must go outside during or after a storm for any reason, they should layer properly to protect themselves against hypothermia and frostbite. They should also use caution when doing any activity outdoors, such as shoveling snow.

When residents must clear walkways and driveways, follow these tips to make removing snow safer:

  • Shovel in shifts instead of all at once;
  • Take breaks and drink water to prevent dehydration;
  • Push snow instead of lifting it – if you must lift, bend your legs and not your back;
  • Avoid twisting motions that can stress your back; and
  • If using a snow blower, follow all safety instruction and stay aware of other who may be nearby.

Additional information on how to stay safe during and after a snow storm can be found on the Department of Health’s website at www.health.pa.gov or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

MEDIA CONTACT: Nate Wardle, 717-787-1783, or ra-dhpressoffice@pa.gov

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