Paul Januszewski, Fire Chief
North Haven, CT 06473
For Immediate Release
Wednesday, Jan. 3, 2018
Media Contact: John Guilfoil
North Haven Fire Department Offers Cold Weather Safety Tips
NORTH HAVEN — With extremely cold temperatures currently in New England, which are not expected to let up over the next couple weeks, Chief Paul Januszewski would like to provide the community with several important safety tips.
Daytime high temperatures will likely not rise above the teens from Thursday through the weekend, and high temperatures in some interior locations may not rise above the single digits, according to the National Weather Service. Overnight low temperatures will likely drop below zero.
The coldest periods are forecast to be over the weekend.
With this type of weather, frostbite and hypothermia are possible for those without proper protection from the cold. To stay safe, the North Haven Fire Department asks that residents follow these tips:
- Minimize outdoor activities for the whole family, including pets.
- If outside, dress in several layers of loose-fitting, lightweight clothing instead of a single heavy layer. Outer garments should be tightly woven and water repellent. Wear a hat, mittens (not gloves) and sturdy waterproof boots to protect your extremities. Cover your mouth with a scarf to protect your lungs.
- Be a good neighbor. Check with elderly or disabled relatives and neighbors to ensure their safety.
Additionally, because of the extreme cold, other areas of your home and vehicles may be affected:
Possible increase in fires from unsafe/improper use of alternative heating sources or people trying to thaw frozen pipes with blowtorches or similar devices.
- If you turn on a faucet and only a trickle comes out, suspect a frozen pipe. Locate the area of the water pipe that might be frozen. Likely places include pipes running against exterior walls or where your water service enters your home through the foundation.
- Apply heat to the section of pipe using an electric heating pad wrapped around the pipe, an electric hair dryer, or wrapping pipes with towels soaked in hot water. Extreme care should be taken when utilizing any blowtorch, kerosene or propane heater, coal stove, wood stove or other open flame devices. All open flames in homes present a serious fire danger, as well as a severe risk of exposure to lethal carbon monoxide. Be sure to check that carbon monoxide detectors and smoke detectors are working properly.
Possible increase in incidents of carbon monoxide poisoning from unsafe/improper use of alternative heating sources.
- Ensure you have sufficient heating fuel, as well as alternate emergency heating equipment in case you lose electricity.
- When utilizing alternate heating sources, such as an emergency generator, your fireplace, wood stove, coal stove or space heater, make sure they are properly ventilated and always operate a generator outdoors and away from your home. Improper heating devices can lead to dangerous carbon monoxide buildup in the home.
Possible vehicle failure.
- Make sure your car is properly winterized. Keep the gas tank at least half-full. Carry a winter emergency car kit including blankets, extra clothing, a flashlight with spare batteries, non-perishable foods, windshield scraper, shovel, sand, tow rope and jumper cables in the trunk.