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COLD WEATHER: 6 important tips for keeping you and your family safe

Post Date:11/19/2019 3:17 PM

cold-weather tips 

Cold weather – at least for our standards here in the Valley – has finally arrived. And as the temperatures get lower, it’s important to keep a few essential safety tips in mind.

Here are six important tips for keeping you and your family safe this winter, courtesy of Goodyear Police and Fire:

1. Don’t leave your vehicle running unattended. As temperatures dip, it’s common for Valley residents to allow their cars to run until they're sufficiently heated. But it’s important to ensure that your vehicle is not left unattended during this time, especially in the early-morning and later-evening hours, as doing so could result in the vehicle being stolen.

2. Close and lock windows and doors at night. When Arizona temperatures cool down, it’s tempting to sleep with the windows open. But it’s crucial to keep doors and windows securely locked overnight and when you’re not at home in order to prevent intruders from entering.

3. Practice the 3-feet rule with heaters. Some Arizonans only use space heaters to heat their homes. With these types of heaters, it’s important to ensure that nothing – including children, pets and materials -- is left within three feet of them. Also, make sure to plug heaters directly into outlets; do not use an extension cord! And be sure to unplug heaters before leaving the house and when sleeping. Go here for more information on the 3 feet rule.

4. Practice the 3-feet rule with fires, too! Outdoor fires in Goodyear are popular in the winter months. Be sure to practice the same 3-feet rule with these. Also, have a fire extinguisher handy and away from the actual fire pit for easy access. And if you’re using wood for your fire, make sure you’re not burning on a no-burn day.

5. Bring a “go bag” when traveling. You only have to travel a couple hours in any direction out of the Valley to encounter extreme cold weather. That’s why creating a travel “go bag” is important. Make sure to pack all the essentials -- extra water, food, blankets and flashlights – before embarking on any winter road trip. (This is a good practice for any time during the year!)

6. Keep kids safe on road trips. Going on a winter road trip with the family? When traveling with children, make sure to keep them properly restrained in the back seat. Go here for important info on car and booster seats.

Additional resources:

Maricopa County's Personal and Family Preparedness plan

Fire prevention and safety

Keeping pets safe in extreme weather