Tag Archives: #winterweather

Winter returns this weekend! Are you prepared? Here are tips to help

Snow storm in Cleveland

Are you ready for this?

Forecasters are predicting the first real snowstorm of the season will arrive this weekend. In an effort to keep our customers safe and aware, Cleveland Public Power offers the following tips on what you can do in preparation.

What can you expect?  

This evening Cleveland is expected to receive a slight coating of snow. Things are really going to get interesting according to forecasters on Saturday. Temps are expected to plunge and a new round of snow coupled with heavy winds is heading this way.

These blustery conditions are going to last through Sunday and Monday, and the cold air will plunge even further.  In preparation for the storm, here is a list of items that will help keep you safe:

  • Make sure you have flashlights, battery-powered radio and extra batteries in case of an interruption of power.
  • Charge cell phones, tablets, and laptops so that you can stay connected in the event of an outage. Also, charge your chargers for extra power.
  • Gather blankets, sleeping bags and extra clothing to keep everyone comfortable.
  • Keep non-perishable snacks and food that does not require cooking handy.
  • Stock up on bottled water.
  • Keep a cooler handy with ice packs and/or ice to keep perishable items cold in case of an outage.
  • Unplug and avoid using major electric appliances
  • Conditions such as those forecast for this weekend have the potential to result in ice and heavy snow accumulating on power lines and tree limbs, which could result in power outages. Below are tips to keep you safe during this and other winter storms:

Downed power lines – Never touch, move or go near any downed or hanging lines. The first action should be to call 9-1-1 or your local utility. CPP’s Trouble Line can be reached by calling 216-664-3156.

  • Do not put your feet in water where a downed line is laying
  • Do not try to move tree limbs
  • If you see someone who has come into contact with a downed line, do not touch them, again call 9-1-1
  • If a line comes down on your car stay inside, roll down your window and warn others to stay away. Call authorities or ask a passerby to call authorities. The only time you should exit a vehicle with a downed line on it is if it has caught fire. If the vehicle is on fire, open the door and jump with both feet together to avoid contact with the car. It is metal and therefore you could receive a shock.
  • Power outage and food safety – Unless there is a major outage extending more than 4 hours, your food should be safe in the refrigerator as long as you leave the doors closed. After that point, you may want to begin to prepare and/or eat the food.
  • Food in the freezer will hold much longer. According to the USDA, “a full freezer will hold the temperature for approximately 48 hours (24 hours if it is half full) if the door remains closed.”
  • If it appears the outage will last for a prolonged period of time, the USDA advises obtaining dry ice or block ice to keep the refrigerator cold. The USDA reports “fifty pounds of dry ice should hold an 18-cubic foot full freezer for 2 days.”
  • In-Home Tips – unplug and avoid using major electric appliances and avoid using landline telephones. You should also avoid using the telephone because in the event of a lightning strike these lines and other wires can conduct electricity.
  • We advise against using candles, but when using do not leave them unattended.

In the event of widespread outages, customers will also be able to follow updates on Twitter at @CLEPublicPower, and on Facebook at https://bit.ly/2QWUJHS.

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Winter Storm Tips to keep you safe

WEB_First-snow

A scene from a November 2014, Lake Effect snowstorm. (Photo by Shelley M. Shockley)

Mother Nature is inching closer to providing Clevelanders with a white Christmas beginning this weekend. Northeast Ohio and Cleveland are currently under a Lake Effect Snow Advisory through Saturday morning.

As you plan for the weekend and the weeks to come we thought this would be a good time to share some basic safety principles and energy saving tips.

The Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) offers the following tips to keep you safe as you begin bringing out heaters:

  • Keep all furniture, draperies, and other household objects at least three feet from the in-wall fan heaters and 12 inches from baseboard heaters. Keep portable space heaters at least three feet way from all flammable materials.
  • Plug portable space heaters directly into the outlet; do not use an extension cord.
  • If an in-wall or baseboard heater is shut off at the circuit breaker, be sure to lock or tag the circuit breaker to prevent someone from inadvertently turning it back on.

Fireplace Safety

Fireplaces can be romantic and cozy yet they can be extremely hazardous if you do not exercise proper caution.  The most important step is to be certain that your fireplace was constructed for actual use, not just for decoration.  If installing a factory-made fireplace, make sure that you have adequate heat barriers and you aren’t putting it near anything combustible.

If you plan on using your fireplace regularly, you should have your chimney cleaned annually, and ensure that it is clear of leaves, pine needles and any other debris.  You should never use flammable liquids to ignite a fire, nor burn any cardboard, trash or debris in your fireplace.  Always use a screen around the fireplace to keep sparks from flying out.  Never leave your fire unattended, and be certain the flames are completely out before retiring for the night or whenever leaving the house.  Always keep a fire extinguisher on hand, and place smoke alarms on every level of your home.  By following these handy tips you should be able to enjoy a warm cozy winter in front of your fireplace and save on your heating bill.

Energy Saving Tips:

TAKE ADVANTAGE OF HEAT FROM THE SUN

Open curtains on your south-facing windows during the day to allow sunlight to naturally heat your home, and close them at night to reduce the chill you may feel from cold windows.

COVER DRAFTY WINDOWS

Use a heavy-duty, clear plastic sheet on a frame or tape clear plastic film to the inside of your window frames during the cold winter months. Make sure the plastic is sealed tightly to the frame to help reduce infiltration.

Install tight-fitting, insulating drapes or shades on windows that feel drafty after weatherizing. Find out about other window treatments and coverings that can improve energy efficiency.

ADJUST THE TEMPERATURE

When you are home and awake, set your thermostat as low as is comfortable. When you are asleep or out of the house, turn your thermostat back 10° to 15° for eight hours and save around 10% a year on your heating and cooling bills. A programmable thermostat can make it easy to set back your   temperature. Find out how to operate your thermostat for maximum energy savings.

FIND AND SEAL LEAKS

Seal the air leaks around utility cut-throughs for pipes (“plumbing penetrations”), gaps around chimneys and recessed lights in insulated ceilings, and unfinished spaces behind cupboards and closets.

Find out how to detect air leaks. Learn more about air sealing new and existing homes. Add caulk or weatherstripping to seal air leaks around leaky doors and windows. Find out how to select and apply the appropriate caulk. Learn how to select and apply weatherstripping.

MAINTAIN YOUR HEATING SYSTEMS

Schedule service for your heating system. Find out what maintenance is required to keep your heating system operating efficiently.

Furnaces: Replace your furnace filter once a month or as needed. Find out more about maintaining your furnace or boiler.

Wood- and Pellet-Burning Heaters: Clean the flue vent regularly and clean the inside of the appliance with a wire brush periodically to ensure that your home is heated efficiently.

For the Fireplace

  • Keep your fireplace damper closed unless a fire is burning. Keeping the damper open is like keeping a window wide open during the winter; it allows warm air to go right up, and out of the chimney.
  • When you use the fireplace, reduce heat loss by opening dampers in the bottom of the firebox (if provided) or open the nearest window slightly–approximately 1 inch–and close doors leading into the room. Lower the thermostat setting to between 50° and 55°F.
  • If you never use your fireplace, plug and seal the chimney flue.
  •  If you do use the fireplace, install tempered glass doors and a heat-air exchange system that blows warmed air back into the room.
  • Check the seal on the fireplace flue damper and make it as snug as possible.
  • Purchase grates made of C-shaped metal tubes to draw cool room air into the fireplace and circulate warm air back into the room.
  •  Add caulking around the fireplace hearth.

Additional tips on staying safe and warm during winter storms can be found at http://www.ready.gov/winter-weather.

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