Whether you believe it or not, the world is becoming subject to more and more extreme weather – and we must be prepared! The need for the UK to improve how it deals with extreme weather, mainly snow, is a growing concern. Comparing UK extreme weather measures to that of Canada for instance should make us all blush; a common refrain for angry commuter on British roads in the snow: “one sprinkle and the whole country’s at a standstill!”
More unpredictable than ever
Are we set for the coldest Easter on record? The daffodils may have come out already, but don’t put away your winter warmers just yet. In the last few years, British weather has become more unpredictable, meaning collectively, we need to adapt.
The best way to avoid getting caught out by snow and ice and the difficulties they present on a daily basis is to make sure you are prepared for all eventualities.
- Invest in appropriate weather gear for both you and your family – for wind, rain and snow. Having spare blankets and waterproofs for example at work, home and your vehicle can stop you getting caught out.
- Small businesses should make sure slippery outdoor areas are all gritted prior to weather events to avoid potential injury.
- Ensure your boiler is in working order before winter.
- If you are a driver, make sure your car is serviced before you drive in very cold weather. Buy de-icer spray, and have the engine warm up for longer before you leave.
- Check for travel service updates online and on the radio – Twitter is the best for getting up to the minute travel news on demand.
Unfortunately, for all the potential claims of media ‘scaremongering’, being unprepared in cold weather can be fatal even in the UK with more people dying in the winter than any other season. Be aware of elderly people and those who are less physically able in your neighbourhood as they won’t necessarily be as able to prepare – they may need assistance doing daily tasks like buying food or travelling to appointments. The NHS has published helpful advice about how to deal with the cold weather – you can find it here.
Check the weather for the week before work so you have time to get ready for whatever it throws at you. The bottom line in extreme cold: if you don’t absolutely need to go out, don’t do it.