Ministry of the
Solicitor General

Fact Sheets



(Ice/Sleet Storm, Blizzard/Snowstorm, Hailstorm)

Winter storms can be treacherous and damaging if you are unprepared. They can disrupt power supply and transportation and create home and personal safety issues. Bitter cold and winter storms kill more people than the number of Canadians killed by tornadoes, thunderstorms, lightning, floods and hurricanes combined. Being prepared can literally save your life.

When winter storms are expected, Emergency Management Ontario advises the public to follow these tips.

Personal Preparedness –Before the Storm

• Add additional items to your emergency survival kit such as; extra warm clothes and blankets.

• Winterize your home to retain heat by insulating walls and attics, caulking or weather-stripping doors and windows, and installing storm windows or covering windows with plastic.

• Maintain heating equipment and chimneys by having them cleaned and inspected every year.

Safety Tips –During the Storm

If you are indoors:

• Listen to the radio and/or television for weather reports and emergency information.

• Stay indoors. If you must go outside, dress for the weather to avoid serious cold-related injuries.

• Running water, even at a trickle, helps prevent pipes from freezing.

If you are outdoors:

• Avoid overexertion when shovelling snow. If you must shovel snow, ensure you take frequent breaks so as not to over-stress your body.

• Dress in several layers of lightweight clothing, wear mittens and a hat (preferably one that covers your ears).

• Wear waterproof, insulated boots to keep your feet warm and dry and to maintain your footing in ice and snow.

• It is important to regularly check for frostbite, indicators include numbness or white areas on your face and extremities (ears, nose, cheeks, hands and feet in particular).

• Bring pets/companion animals inside during winter weather. Move other animals or livestock to sheltered areas with non-frozen drinking water.

For more information contact:

Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services

Emergency Management Ontario

Toll Free: 1-877-314-3723

Disponible en français à