MEMA Urges Preparation for Freezing Forecast

Mississippi Emergency Management Agency says residents should prepare for bitterly cold temperatures this week.

It says snow, freezing rain and rain are in the forecast for Wednesday night through Thursday.

Low temperatures will likely reach the teens, with some areas potentially dipping down to the single digits while highs will only rise into the 20s in a large portion of the state through Sunday.

“We could see the coldest temperatures in 30 years this week,” said MEMA executive director Mike Womack. “This is one of those emergencies we can see coming and people should prepare themselves.”

MEMA offered the following tips for people to protect themselves from freezing temperatures:

Wear several layers of loose fitting, lightweight, warm clothing rather than one layer of heavy clothing.

Wear mittens, they are warmer than gloves.

Wear a hat, body heat is lost through your head.

Know ahead of time what you should do to help elderly or disabled friends, neighbors or employees.

Bring pets inside.

Watch for signs of hypothermia. These include uncontrollable shivering, memory loss, disorientation, incoherence, slurred speech, drowsiness, and apparent exhaustion.

To protect your home:

Winterize your home to extend the life of your fuel supply by insulating walls and attics, caulking and weather-stripping doors and windows, and installing storm windows or covering windows with plastic.

Keep fire extinguishers on hand, and make sure everyone in your house knows how to use them. House fires pose an additional risk, as more people turn to alternate heating sources without taking the necessary safety precautions.

Insulate pipes with insulation or newspapers and plastic and allow faucets to drip a little during cold weather to avoid freezing. Also keep cabinet doors open to allow heat to reach pipes.

Learn how to shut off water valves (in case a pipe bursts).

If the pipes freeze, remove any insulation or layers of newspapers and wrap pipes in rags. Completely open all faucets and pour hot water over the pipes, starting where they were most exposed to the cold (or where the cold was most likely to penetrate).

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  • by Fed up! Location: Collinsville on Jan 8, 2010 at 02:37 PM
    Again, Lauderdale County superintendent Randy Hodges has called off schools prematurely. In the south You need to wait until you see the weather or how bad it is before canceling schools! I don't feel that my children should make up days because of the school boards decision to close. Again they jumped the gun, just like last year! You would think a lesson would have been learned. AND Do we need another LEMA director? I do appreciate their concern for my children BUT, They should have waited before making their decision! The children should have returned to school Friday!!!
  • by Vicky Location: Collinsville on Jan 5, 2010 at 02:25 PM
    oh my goodness, can you believe that we have this kind of weather coming, i have no idea where to start with my preparations, my job has requested that i don't attempt to take off from work and make arrangements for my kids to stay with someone else, that's crazy, it's not worth the money if i get killed on my way to work trying to make the money. give us a break, and what are the school systems going to do, parents need to know these things ahead of time.
  • by breize Location: n. meridian on Jan 5, 2010 at 11:06 AM
    oh this going to hurt !!!!!!! what happened to the sunny south?
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