Hazardous Travel Advisory for Snow/ Potential Freezing Rain Saturday, December 17

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Good Afternoon AWS Service Providers,

The Advance Warning System (AWS) disseminates information to people with disabilities and others with access and functional needs through their service providers. Please share the important information below with your clients and other agencies or individuals to empower them to make informed decisions.

The New York City Emergency Management Department today issued a hazardous travel advisory for Saturday, December 17. New Yorkers are advised to exercise caution when driving, walking, or biking, and allow for additional travel time as roads may be slippery. The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Weather Advisory for New York City from midnight until 10:00 AM Saturday, December 17. A total of 1-2 inches of snow is expected late Friday into Saturday morning. Around 7 - 8 AM Saturday morning, snow is expected to change to rain, with a brief period of freezing rain and icing roadways possible. Rain is expected to continue through Saturday afternoon as temperatures remain above freezing.

Safety tips:

Exercise caution and avoid slippery surfaces; some ice may not be visible. Wear sturdy boots that provide traction to reduce slipping. Use handrails when using stairs. Seniors should take extra care outdoors to avoid slips and falls from icy conditions.

When driving in snowy or icy conditions:

  • Drive slowly. Vehicles take longer to stop on snow and ice than on dry pavement.
  • Use major streets or highways for travel where possible.
  • Install good winter tires that have adequate tread. All-weather radials are usually adequate for most winter conditions.
  • Four-wheel drive vehicles may make it easier to drive on snow-covered roads, but they do not stop quicker than other vehicles.
  • Know your vehicle's braking system. Vehicles with anti-lock brakes require a different braking technique than vehicles without anti-lock brakes in icy or snowy conditions.
  • If you are driving and begin to skid, ease your foot off the gas and steer in the direction you want the front of the car to go. Straighten the wheel when the car moves in the desired direction. If you have an anti-lock braking system (ABS), apply steady pressure to the brake pedal. Never pump the brakes on an ABS equipped vehicle.
  • Try to keep your vehicle's gas tank as full as possible.
  • Keep the name and phone number of at least one local towing service in your car in case you break down or become stuck.
  • If you get stuck on the road, stay with your car and contact a towing company.

Preparing for the upcoming winter season:

The New York City Emergency Management Department has partnered with local media outlets to help inform New Yorkers about how they can prepare for the winter season with a series of new videos. The videos feature PIX11 News' weather anchors Linda Church and Mr. G, along with reporters from Telemundo. From packing a Go Bag with winter essentials to bundling up during cold temperatures, these videos offer important steps to prepare and stay safe this winter. The videos can be viewed on NYC.gov/EmergencyManagement, on Twitter at @nycoem, or on the NYC Emergency Management YouTube and Facebook pages.

"This new video project is a reminder of the simple steps we can take to make sure we're ready for the winter season," said NYC Emergency Management Commissioner Joseph Esposito. "Having a Go Bag with winter supplies, dressing warmly and in layers when going out into the cold, and checking in on family, friends, and neighbors will help keep New Yorkers safe and prepared for winter."

"Telemundo 47 holds a steadfast commitment to our city's Spanish-speaking neighborhoods and communities, further reflected by our station's partnership with the New York City Emergency Management. We encourage residents to tune into Telemundo 47 and log onto Telemundo47.com for expert, accurate forecasts from our La Autoridad en El Tiempo Weather Authority team featuring Meteorologists Andrea Romero and Pedro Montoro and Weather Anchors Janice Bencosme and Miguel Bedoy, in addition to receiving important, life-saving winter weather tips which will keep families safe and secure throughout the season," said Karen Mendez, Telemundo 47 Vice President of News.

Tips to prepare:

Make a Plan

  • Make sure your Household Disaster Plan is ready and all members of your household are familiar with how to contact one another in an emergency.
  • Winterize your Go Bag by adding a blanket, warm socks and gloves.
  • Your Emergency Supply Kit should be fully stocked to allow you to sustain yourself for up to three days without power, or in the event you are unable to travel far from home. You may wish to include additional items such as extra blankets, additional warm clothing, and a battery-operated NOAA Weather Radio to monitor weather conditions during a storm.

Winterize Your Home

  • Install storm shutters, doors and windows; clean out gutters, repair any roof leaks, and have a contractor check the stability of your roof in the event of a large accumulation of snow.
  • Insulate walls and attic. Caulk and weather-strip doors and windows. Install storm windows, or cover windows with plastic from the inside.
  • Have safe emergency heating equipment available. For residences with functioning fireplaces, keep an ample supply of wood.
  • Install and check batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.
  • Make sure you have sufficient heating fuel; you may have difficulty obtaining fuel in the immediate aftermath of a bad storm.
  • Service snow removal equipment, and have rock salt on hand to melt ice on walkways. Kitty litter can be used to generate temporary traction.

Winterize Your Car

Make sure to have a mechanic check the following items on your vehicle:

  • Battery
  • Antifreeze
  • Windshield wipers and washer fluid
  • Ignition system
  • Thermostat
  • Lights (headlamps and hazard lights)
  • Exhaust system, heater, brakes, defroster
  • Oil level (if necessary, replace oil with a winter oil or SAE 10w/30 variety)

Assemble an Emergency Supply Kit for your vehicle, and consider adding the following items for winter conditions:

  • Blankets, sleeping bags, extra newspapers for insulation.
  • Extra mittens, socks, scarves and hat, raingear and extra clothes.
  • Sack of sand or kitty litter for gaining traction under wheels, small shovel.
  • Set of tire chains or traction mats.
  • Working jack and lug wrench, spare tire.
  • Windshield scraper, broom.
  • Small tools (pliers, wrench, screwdriver).
  • Booster cables.
  • Brightly colored cloth to use as a flag, flares or reflective triangles.

Safety Tips

New Yorkers are also encouraged to take the following precautions during extreme cold:

  • Stay indoors as much as possible.
  • If you have to go outdoors, wear dry, warm clothing and cover exposed skin. Keep fingertips, earlobes, and noses covered.
  • Wear a hat, hood, or scarf, as most heat is lost through the head.
  • Shivering is an important first sign that the body is losing heat. Shivering is a signal to return indoors.
  • Drinking alcohol may make you think you feel warmer, but it actually increases your chances of hypothermia and frostbite.
  • Follow your doctor's advice about performing hard work in the cold if you have heart disease or high blood pressure. Cold weather puts an extra strain on the heart. Remember, your body is already working hard just to stay warm, so don't overdo it.

For more winter weather safety tips, view NYC Emergency Management's video or visit NYC.gov/EmergencyManagement. New Yorkers are also encouraged to sign up for Notify NYC, the City's free emergency notification system. Through Notify NYC, New Yorkers can receive phone calls, text messages, and/or emails alerts about winter weather conditions and other emergencies. To sign up for Notify NYC, call 311, visit NYC.gov/notifynyc, or follow @NotifyNYC on Twitter.

NYC Emergency Management Human Services Unit:
Human Services email distribution list: humanservicesesflist@oem.nyc.gov

December 16, 2016