Colorado is known for snow and sunshine—and occasionally both at the same time. While those sparkling snowflakes add to the beauty of our home state, they can also create dangerous conditions for all members of our community. Improve your peace of mind this season with the following winter-savvy safety tips.

Driving Tips:

One of the biggest winter weather worries is driving, particularly if you don’t drive often or don’t have experience driving in inclement weather. Preparing your car for the winter season can help ease those worries.

  • Schedule a car maintenance check and consider getting snow or all-weather tires.
  • Clear all snow and ice off your car to ensure complete visibility before driving.
  • Fill up your windshield washer and antifreeze levels and have extra of both stored in your car or garage.
  • Keep emergency supplies in your car. A tote bag or small box can hold a blanket, gloves, flashlight, extra batteries, snowbrush and ice scraper, a small bag of sand, and a jacket.
  • Drive slowly to ensure fewer problems with stopping or starting suddenly. And remember, you don’t need to pump your brakes on icy patches if your car has anti-lock brakes.

Home Tips:

In Colorado, low temperatures and big snow storms are inevitable so preparing your house for the winter will keep you warm and safe inside.

  • Install heavy fabric drapes on windows to keep cold air from leaking in at night. If your windows have cracks or gaps around the frame, use caulking to seal them up.
  • Place weather stripping or use a door sock—a long fabric tube full of insulating material—to keep out the chill from drafty doors.
  • Your furnace or heater needs regular check-ups to ensure it is working properly. Oftentimes, your utility service can perform this maintenance check and also change your furnace filter.
  • Create a small bag of storm essentials before the snow hits. This should include a flashlight, batteries, drinking water, and foods that won’t go bad like crackers, peanut butter, and dried fruit.

Tips for Braving the Cold:

Whether you have someplace to be or just need to get out of the house, staying safe when out and about is important.

  • Use sand and rock salt on sidewalks and driveways around your home for traction and melting ice. When you’re away from home, carry a small bag of sand in a tight, sealed container in your purse or pocket.
  • Before shoveling, take a few minutes to warm up. Running in place or doing some light stretching decreases your likelihood of a muscle strain.
  • If you don’t carry or use a cell phone regularly, consider a prepaid phone. A cheap prepaid phone is easy to leave in a purse or a car in case of emergencies. You can get a phone with very low minutes so you’re not paying a lot but have an option if you fall or get into trouble.

Enjoy all the beauty Colorado winter has to offer without worry. The tips given above can increase your safety and confidence this season so you don’t go slip-sliding away.

Have a winter safety tip we didn’t include? Mention it below and we’ll feature it on our Twitter with #WinterSafetyTips.