Quick Tips for Emergency Snow Survival

Winter storms can pop up suddenly and quickly.  Knowing a few quick  tips can help with everything from minor annoyances to major problems.

First, one of the most difficult situations to get out of is a car stuck in snow... the tire can spin endlessly, but with no traction you aren't going to get anywhere.  I've even had this happen in my own driveway.  Keep a bag of kitty litter or birdseed handy.  Your car's trunk is the best place to store it, so it can be used at home as well as away from home.  Sprinkle a good amount under tires to create traction and help get your car unstuck.  Sand or kitty litter will also help with traction around your house, like on icy front steps.

De-icers are a good thing to keep on hand as well - especially for your car's windshield.  You can make your own de-icer from 1 teaspoon of a grease-fighting dish detergent, like Dawn, 1 teaspoon of rubbing alcohol and 1/2 a gallon of warm water.  Use on driveways, walkways and windshields to prevent wet surfaces from freezing over.  Use before the storm to keep ice from bonding to hard surfaces.

Choose the right shovel.  Look for an ergonomic handle and non-stick surface.  But otherwise, use this a life hack you've probably never thought of: spray your snow shovel with cooking spray.  The snow will slide right off, making shoveling a little easier for you.  A large snow pusher with a C shaped blade can help move snow out of the way and is especially good for light, fluffy snow.

Don't wait.  Shovel snow while it's still snowing if you can.  Shoveling a few inches a few times is going to be a lot easier than shoveling a foot or more at once. 

Finally, in case of a power outage, freeze plastic bags of water ahead of time.  You can use these in your fridge to keep food cold.  You can also use outside spaces to keep food from spoiling.  If the temperature outside is 40 degrees or below you can put hearty perishables (like fruits and veggies) in a cooler and leave them on your deck, patio or front porch. 

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