For information regarding current flood warnings and river levels click on the link below:
For general flood information:
If you are planning on sheltering in place and your home is located in the area commonly affected by floods please see the form located under the Flood Alerts and follow the instructions. By filling out this form we will be able to better prepare for any flood conditions that may arise this year. Thank you for your cooperation.
Driving is a very common factor contributing to vehicle accidents. Use the following information provided by http://www.roadandtravel.com/safetyandsecurity/winterdrivingtips.htm to prevent you from being a victim of the weather conditions.
Prepare your vehicle for winter driving; use this checklist:
1. Check windshield wiper blades to make sure they work properly. In some areas, snow blades are an effective alternative to conventional wiper blades.
2. Have your mechanic test the anti-freeze/coolant to provide the correct level of protection required in your driving area.
3. Make sure your tires are properly inflated. Underinflation can reduce the gripping action of tires because the tread will not meet the road surface as it was designed to do. Overinflation has the same effect.
4. If you live in areas where snow and ice are certainties of winter, don't depend on all-season tires. Instead, install snow tires. Snow tires are made of softer components and have a unique tread design that provide better traction and road-gripping abilities.
5. Keep your gas tank at least half-full. The extra volume can help reduce moisture problems within your fuel system. It also adds helpful weight to your vehicle.
6. In rear-wheel drive vehicles, extra weight in the trunk may be helpful. Use care-- unsecured weight can shift while you are moving or if you have to stop suddenly. Bags of sand can provide weight and, if sprinkled on the ice, sand helps provide traction.
- Keep your vehicle stocked with simple emergency equipment in case you do get stalled or have an accident. Consider keeping these items in your vehicle:
- blanket or extra clothes
- candle with matches
- beverages (never alcohol)
- C. B. radio, cellular phone or ham radio
- a small shovel
- windshield scraping device
- tow rope
- bag of sand or cat litter for traction
- long jumper cables
Home Heating Fires – A Burning Issue
The high cost of home heating and utilities has caused many of us to turn to alternative heating sources such as space heaters, fireplaces and wood stoves. While these alternative methods of heating may be acceptable, they are also a major contributing factor in residential fires. Over one-quarter of heating fires result from improper maintenance of equipment, specifically the failure to clean the equipment.
“Working smoke alarms provide early notification to the presence of smoke. They can alert you and your family to danger,” says State Fire Marshal Charles Duffy. “By frequently practicing a home escape plan, household members will be more familiar with exit strategies.”
Carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning is another danger when using fuel burning heating equipment, and occurs most often when equipment is not vented properly. CO is known as the “silent killer” because you cannot see it, smell it or taste it. At lower levels of exposure, CO causes mild effects that are often mistaken for the flu. These symptoms include headaches, dizziness, disorientation, nausea, and fatigue. The effects of CO exposure can vary greatly from person to person depending on age, overall health, and the concentration and length of exposure.
Preventing Home Heating Fires:
Fireplaces and Wood Stoves –
- Be sure the fireplace or stove is installed properly. Wood stoves should have adequate clearance (3 feet) from combustible surfaces as well as proper floor support and protection. Have your chimney inspected annually and cleaned, if necessary.
- Keep a glass or metal screen in front of the fireplace opening to prevent embers or sparks from jumping out and unwanted material from going in. Keep flammable or combustible materials away from your fireplace mantel.
- Never close your damper with hot ashes in the fireplace. Allow ashes to cool and dispose of them in a metal container.
Space Heaters –
- Be sure your heater is in good working condition. Inspect for cracked, frayed or broken plugs or loose connections and exhaust parts for carbon buildup. Be sure the heater has an emergency shut off in case it is tipped over.
- Space heaters need space. Keep all things that can burn, such as paper, bedding or furniture, at least 3 feet away from heating equipment.
- Never use fuel burning appliances without proper room venting, burning fuel can produce deadly fumes. Use ONLY the fuel recommended by the heater manufacturer.
- Plug power cords only into outlets with sufficient capacity and never into an extension cord.