The township Office Of Emergency Management on Tuesday released tips to help residents prepare for winter emergencies.
Emergency kits in vehicles are an essential tool to combat winter emergencies, Police Sgt. Joseph Wilbert said. If you find yourself stranded, stay in the vehicle, turn on the flashers, call for help and wait until it arrives, Wilbert said.
The OEM recommends checking your vehicles now to ensure they are road worthy before inclement weather strikes. Also, keep speeds down during foul weather and give snow plows room to do their jobs. Drivers are encouraged to plan ahead when traveling by calling 5-1-1 or visiting www.511.org for real-time road information, Wilbert said.
During a storm, Wall Township residents with special needs might need additional assistance. Be a good neighbor and check on members of your community who are elderly or homebound as well as those with limited mobility, communication barriers and transportation issues prior to a storm, Wilbert said.
Wall Township residents with a special need and/or their care givers can visit www.registerready.nj.gov and sign up for a free, voluntary and confidential special needs registry. By registering, first responders will be given the ability to prepare, locate and assist those with a special need during emergencies and disasters, Wilbert said.
The OEM recommends the following websites:
- National Weather Service - http://www.erh.noaa.gov/er/phi/Federal Emergency Management Agency – www.ready.gov
- New Jersey Office of Emergency Management Winter Weather Page http://www.ready.nj.gov/plan/winter.html
- Office of the NJ State Climatologist, Rutgers - http://climate.rutgers.edu/stateclim/
- American Red Cross - http://www.redcross.org/
- Federal Highway Traffic Safety Administration Winter Driving Page - http://www.safercar.gov/staticfiles/safercar/pdf/wintertips.pdf
The OEM also recommends that residents sign up or monitor the following:
Global Connect – a free, voluntary and confidential emergency alerting system that allows members of the Wall Township Police Department to send telephone calls to residents and businesses, and E-mail or text messages to cell phones and other enabled devices during an emergency event. Sign up for Global Connect by visiting www.wallpolice.org.
NJ Alert - NJ Alert is a free, voluntary and confidential emergency alerting system that allows NJ Office of Emergency Management officials to send E-mail or text messages to cell phones and other email enabled devices during an emergency event. Sign up for NJ Alert by logging on to: www.njalert.gov.
NOAA Weather Radio - is a nationwide network of radio stations broadcasting continuous weather information directly from the nearest National Weather Service Office. NOAA Weather Radio broadcasts official Weather Service warnings, watches, forecasts and other hazard information 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. NOAA Weather Radios are typically inexpensive, easily available in stores and can often be programmed for your specific area.
Traditional Media – Continue to monitor traditional media sources – TV, newspapers and radio – to stay informed of breaking news and continued coverage of emergency events.
The OEM also recommends the following practices for road safety:
- Always buckle your seat belt.
- Brake properly to avoid skidding. If driving on snow or ice, start slowly and brake gently. Begin braking early when approaching an intersection.
- If the vehicle starts to slide, ease off the gas pedal or brakes. Steer into the direction of the skid until regaining traction, and then straighten the vehicle. For vehicles with antilock brakes, apply steady pressure.
- Visibility and speed:
- In fog, drive with headlights set on dim or use fog lights.
- In rain, fog, snow or sleet, stay within the limits of your vision. If it is too difficult to see, pull off the road and stop.
- Drive slowly and increase following distance. Vehicle speed should adjust for conditions and match the flow of traffic.
- Watch for slick spots. Be physically and mentally prepared to react.