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Its on the way

Cleveland Daily Banner - 12/17/2017

It's on the way!

We live in an area that experiences many changes in the weather. In Southeast Tennessee, one day, the temperature is 60 degrees, the next day we shiver at 32, with snow! Winter arrives this coming Thursday at 4:28 p.m. The new season comes with a number of hazards for homeowners, and there are things you can do to protect your property and your family. Keep these tips in mind.

The fact that your central heating unit, space heater, or fireplace was working properly at the end of last season does not mean it is ready for this winter. Before the cold sets in, hire a professional to conduct a safety inspection of your heating units, as well as your fireplace's flue and chimney. If any potential risks exist, act immediately to remedy them. If you will be using space heaters, make sure your rooms have proper ventilation and that the units are not near anything flammable. Using unsafe heating systems can result in fire, injuries, or carbon monoxide poisoning.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 400 people die annually of carbon monoxide poisoning in the United States. Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless vapor produced by gas furnaces and space heaters. It is similar to the exhaust from your car. Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include nausea, dizziness, severe headache, confusion, and unconsciousness. If you notice these symptoms in yourself or a family member, get out into fresh air immediately and go to the emergency room. Carbon monoxide poisoning can be fatal in just a few minutes. If you have a central gas heater, use gas-powered space heaters, or have a fireplace, install carbon monoxide detectors in your home. These detectors are available at many retailers in Bradley County.

When temperatures slip below freezing, it is important to take steps to prevent ruptured plumbing. Burst pipes are one of the most aggravating, costly and dangerous problems we face in cold weather. To prevent burst pipes in extreme cold, it is best to leave water dripping slightly overnight, so that water is constantly running through them to reduce the chances of freezing. Additionally, open the cabinets in which indoor pipes are housed so they are exposed to the warmest temperatures in your home. Outdoor pipes should be wrapped with sufficient insulation to reduce exposure to the elements. Never leave a hose attached to an outside faucet during the winter months. In addition, it is just not safe to try to thaw frozen pipes under the house with a flame. Burst pipes are one thing, a house severely damaged or destroyed by fire is another.

Some years, Bradley County experiences little snow and ice, while other years, (like just the other day), enough snow can fall to create a travel problem due to icy roadways. Stay tuned to area radio and TV stations for road conditions, school and business closings. There are times we urge citizens NOT to travel, for safety reasons. Each year, there are injuries and health problems that arise due to the weather. Clearing snow and ice from your sidewalks and driveways can be dangerous to your health. You well know what exercise your body can stand without doing harm to yourself. Here is where we use a common phrase, "be careful."

Again, we live in a beautiful area of southeast Tennessee, with changeable weather in every season. Forecasting snow and cold is sometimes difficult. That is why the Bradley County Sheriff's Office urges you to be ready for weather changes. Know that we are always prepared. Your Bradley County Sheriff's Office is always ready to serve you, in any kind of weather!


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