Emergency preparedness for winter storm emergencies is very important for you, your family and your livestock. We can’t control the weather, but we can prepare for the weather and what it brings. Below zero temperatures, wind chills, power outages and more.
Winter storm emergency preparedness (blizzard, snow storms, ice storm) for families, farmers and ranchers to minimize losses should include the following considerations (see our emergency preparedness the basics page to purchase all of these items and for a more complete list):
- Avoid drifting snow that would block necessary building entrances, home, barn, pens, feed supply and water.
- Build new buildings to face away from prominent winter winds.
- Build wind break fences or shelters for animals.
- Mark driveways, feed troughs, gates with flags so snow can be easily cleared.
- Remove snow and large icicles from building roof edges to prevent roof collapses.
- Insulate buildings used for livestock. Purchase horse blankets if necessary.
- Keep equipment to fight small fires handy.
- Be prepared for isolation at home. Make sure that you have enough food, water and bedding for a few days for family, pets and animals.
- Purchase a heated water hose. Also, any required medications.
- Make sure to have a generator and radio.
Emergency Preparedness – After The Storm
Fencing may need repaired after ice storm. Ice dramatically increases the weight of fencing and power lines, causing them to sag or break. Livestock can easily wander out of the fencing keeping them from the available water and feed. Remember animal
identification is important here also.
Frozen ponds can drive thirsty livestock out to thinner ice to get a drink. Livestock will lick a hole in the thin ice. The ice can break and risk drowning the animals. Make sure that you have available open water for your animals such as a stock tank with a heater for livestock and a heated bucket for pets.
Also, make sure that you have available feed for the livestock. Vital
energy can be wasting pawing through the ice and snow for feed, energy that the animals need to stay warm. Animals consuming ice covered feed lower their body temperature from ingesting the ice.
To help prepare your family and livestock for winter storm emergency, make sure to have the basic emergency preparedness steps down at all times.