US Department of Homeland Security warns of the dangers of the Polar Vortex

Dangerously low temperatures are in the forecast and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) wants individuals and families to be safe when faced with the hazards of cold temperatures caused by the Polar Vortex. “Subfreezing temperatures can be dangerous and even life-threatening for people who don't take the proper precautions,” said Andrew Velasquez III, FEMA Regional Administrator. “It is important for everyone to monitor their local weather reports and take steps now to stay safe during times of extreme cold temperatures.”

During cold weather, you should take the following precautions:

  • Stay indoors as much as possible and limit your exposure to the cold;
  • Dress in layers and keep dry;
  • Check on family, friends, and neighbors who are at risk and may need additional assistance;
  • Know the symptoms of cold-related health issues such  as frostbite and hypothermia and seek medical attention if health      conditions are severe;
  • Bring your pets indoors or ensure they have a warm shelter area with unfrozen water;
  • Make sure your vehicle has an emergency kit that includes an ice scraper, blanket and flashlight – and keep the fuel tank above half full.

You can find more information and tips on being ready for winter weather and extreme cold temperatures at www.ready.gov/winter. You can also follow Ready online on Twitter at twitter.com/ReadydotGov and on Facebook at facebook.com/readygov.

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