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Freezing temps come early to Central Illinois
Red Cross offers top ten winter safety tips

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[November 22, 2014]  LINCOLN - Temperatures are already dipping below  normal across the Midwest. 

As this first taste of winter moves in, the American Red Cross offers ten steps people can take to stay safe during the big chill.

  • Wear layers of lightweight clothing to stay warm. Gloves and a hat will help prevent losing your body heat.
  • Donít forget your pets - bring them indoors. If they canít come inside, make sure they have enough shelter to keep them warm and that they can get to unfrozen water.
  • Make sure your gas tank is full and that all fluids are at the appropriate levels. Include a car disaster kit and an extra blanket in your trunk in case you are stranded.
  • Protect your pipes - run water, even at a trickle, to help prevent your pipes from freezing. Open the kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing.

  • If you are using a space heater, place it on a level, hard surface and keep anything flammable at least three feet away.
  • Turn off space heaters and make sure fireplace embers are out before leaving the room or going to bed.
  • Never use a stove or oven to heat your home.
  • If you are using a fireplace, use a glass or metal fire screen large enough to catch sparks and rolling logs.

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  • Use generators correctly Ė never operate a generator inside the home, including in the basement or garage.
  • Donít hook a generator up to the homeís wiring. The safest thing to do is to connect the equipment you want to power directly to the outlets on the generator.

For more Red Cross preparedness information, please visit

[© 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved.]

About the American Red Cross
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross


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