How to Keep Your Property Safe During a Blizzard
Utah is known for having “the greatest snow on earth.” With that title, it’s not surprising that the state sees blizzards every couple of years. These severe snowstorms have heavy winds and last for several hours. Temperatures drop, and visibility decreases, making it dangerous for people to be outside. But even when people stick to the indoors, homes and other buildings must quite literally weather the storm. How do you make sure that your house stays standing during harsh blizzard conditions? Here are several tips to help your commercial or residential property stay safe even during blustery blizzards.
Protecting Your Home from Blizzards
Prepare the Exterior of Your House
Clear Your Roof
Your home’s roof and siding will bear the brunt of the storm, which means you need to give special attention to these areas. Before a blizzard, clear your roof of any existing snow. This might seem counterintuitive since the blizzard will undoubtedly leave your roof with a new layer of snow. But new snow from the blizzard will compact any remnants of snow, weighing down and posing a cave-in risk for your roof.
Keep a Shovel Handy
Although most blizzards don’t have much snowfall, some can drop 2–6 inches of snow per hour. If your area expects the second type of blizzard, you’ll want to keep a shovel (or two) close by to dig yourself out. We suggest keeping a shovel in your entryway or right inside your garage, so you’ll have easy access to it during the storm.
Clear Exterior Vents
The last thing you want during a blizzard is to have your heater quit working. When the vents to your heating system are covered, they can overheat or cause problems. If you have time before the blizzard hits, take a moment to clear any snow or ice on your exterior vents.
Prepare the Interior of Your House
Fill in Cracks
If your home has any cracks, holes, or gaps, you’ll be able to tell during a blizzard. Keep out the cold by caulking any cracks you find, especially around windows and doors.
Stock Up on Water
When a snowstorm is bad enough, utility companies sometimes shut off your water to prevent freezing and bursting pipes. Store some water bottles and jugs of water that you can use to cook and drink.
Know Where the Valves Are
Blizzards can cause electrical problems and natural gas leaks. In those situations, you don’t have time to go looking for the natural gas valve. Take some time before the storm to show all the adults in your home where to find the natural gas valve, water valve, and electrical breaker box.
Protecting Your Business from Blizzards
Have an Emergency Plan
Your company should have an emergency plan already in place before a blizzard appears on the horizon. If you don’t already have one, create a plan that lists emergency procedures like where to gather and which exits to use. In either case, take some time to review the plan with your employees so that everyone knows what to do.
Create Emergency Kits
Homes and businesses alike can benefit from premade emergency kits. Fill these kits with winter necessities like matches, blankets, flashlights, a first aid kit, radios, and non-perishable food. If you have existing emergency kits, check that everything in it is in top shape. If anything isn’t working properly, replace it before the blizzard hits.
Have a Backup Power Supply
Everything from the computers to the break room fridge in your office needs power. If you lose power, you’ll also lose valuable time and efficiency. Even a small portable generator can save your business during a blizzard.
Blizzard & Snowstorm Protection
When a blizzard or another severe snowstorm arrives, you can keep your home and business safe from the howling winds and snow. A little preparation makes all the difference. Prepare both the inside and outside of your building to ensure it stays standing and that everyone inside stays safe. If your residential or commercial property suffers damage due to a blizzard, let SERVPRO of Cedar City / Fillmore help. We have a specialized team that deals specifically with catastrophes like blizzards, tornadoes, floods, and hurricanes. Our SERVPRO Disaster Recovery Team is available 24 hours a day, each day of the year, to help you whenever disaster strikes.