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Fire and Rescue
Stay off the Roads, Not Out in the Weather
February 12, 2014
As we prepare for possibly one of the biggest snow storms in years, Prince William County Department of Fire and Rescue
urge residents to
“Stay off the Roads, Not Out in the Weather (SNOW) and Get Where You Need to be Before the Weather Gets Bad.”
If you don’t have to travel, don’t!
The safest place during a winter storm is indoors.
But, if travel is unavoidable, be prepared for the worst. Would you know what to do if you became stranded while traveling in your vehicle?
According to the National Weather Service, the majority (70%) of snow and ice related fatalities occur in automobiles and approximately 25% are people caught off guard, out in the storm. Before you hit the road, follow these simple safety tips:
Winterize Your Vehicle
Prior to Inclement weather, be sure to check:
Battery and ignition system
Fuel and air filters
Heater and defroster
Lights and flashing hazard lights
Oil level and weight
Windshield wiper equipment
Install good winter tires
Traveling in a Vehicle
Check your local weather forecast and road conditions.
Listen to your NOAA radio; a good way to keep ahead of the winter storm.
If possible, try to avoid traveling in dangerous conditions.
Be sure to carry warm winter clothes.
Be sure to tell someone, family or friends, about your travel plans.
Keep your gas tank near full to avoid gas line freezing.
Make an emergency winter survival kit for your vehicle:
Windshield scraper and small broom
Flashlight w/extra batteries
Battery powered radio
Bottled water for each person and your pet
Snack foods, containing protein, e.g. raisins, dried fruit, nuts, energy bars,
canned fruit and a portable can opener
Extra winter boots, coats, hats, socks and mittens/gloves
Multi-tool, folding pocket knife
Fully charged cell phone & charger
Blankets (a space blanket if possible, and/or sleeping bags)
Tow chain or rope
Flagging tape or fluorescent distress flag
Road salt and sand or cat litter
Emergency flares or reflective triangle
If You Become Stranded
Stay with your vehicle
First call for help; if you can’t get your car unstuck, don’t leave your car and
begin walking for help. You stand a much better chance of being found if you
remain with your car; it also provides the best shelter from the elements.
Run the motor about 10 minutes each hour for heat.
Make sure that the exhaust pipe is not blocked and roll down a window for adequate ventilation to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.
Make your vehicle visible to rescuers by tying a red-colored cloth to the antenna or by turning on the inside dome light while running the engine.
For more information, visit
Email For Assistance
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Prince William County Government