Staying safe in icy weather

Staying safe in icy weather

Many Canadians take joy in the sight of big, fluffy snowflakes during the winter season. However, we know that sometimes winter weather isn’t always so picturesque. Freezing rain coats our sidewalks and cars in ice, and is even more slippery than snow.

Ice storm safety tips

If severe freezing rain is in your local forecast, Environment Canada has a few tips to help you plan ahead to avoid injuries and property damage.

  • Keep your car off the road. Freezing rain can make roads slippery in seconds. If you can, wait until roads have been salted or sanded and stick to major routes. Remember that it takes longer to stop on snow and ice, so stay well behind the car in front of you.

  • If you have to go outside, be aware of ice sheets and ice-covered branches or wires, which could break and fall under the weight.

  • See downed or hanging power lines? Let your power company or local police know. Assume the lines are still live and keep away from them. If you drive onto a downed line, stay in your car. Back away slowly, call for help and wait until it arrives. Do not try to move the line.

  • Dress for the weather with boots or shoes with rubber soles, which offer the best traction.

  • Use handrails near stairs wherever possible on public transportation and when going in and out of buildings.

  • Stay tuned to your local radio and TV stations to listen for advisories or check the Weather Office website for updates.

  • Make sure your home and car emergency kits are complete with the supplies you and your family would need to sustain you for 72 hours, in case officials close roads or call for evacuation.

Receive our eAlerts

If severe weather is heading for your area, you can receive e-mail alerts from us with information on how to prepare and stay safe.