The citizens of New York City are bracing for a snow storm that many experts think could be the largest in decades. Several meteorological indicators point towards record deposits of snowfall, high winds, and dangerous conditions. The snow is expected to continue through until Wednesday. In the process, roads will be obstructed with snow and airports too will be blanketed, compromising travel plans in and out of our metropolis. Businesses are expected to close prematurely or refrain from opening at all. School closing announcements are already being monitored vigilantly by parents and schoolchildren alike. Of course, these circumstances aren’t unique to New York City. Weather patterns indicate that these wintry conditions will likely effect the entirety of New England. Just how much snow are we looking at? Predictions range anywhere from 8 inches to over 2 feet. Because all pertinent prognosticators point so strongly towards this storm being of record-breaking magnitudes, it’s especially important to heed the advice of professionals. That means heeding all police curfew regulations, obeying all supervisory driving revisions, and paying close attention the safety warnings issued by government officials. At Kaplan Lawyers PC, your safety is of paramount importance to us, so below, we’ll outline some precautions you and your family can take during this snow emergency.
Snowed-In Emergency Kit
When massive amounts of snow preclude you from leaving your home, or at the very least make access to travel a difficult ordeal, the most important preparatory step would be readying a First-Aid Kit. If you already own a First-Aid Kit, be sure to double-check its contents, making certain that all necessary items are in-stock and not expired. What should you pack in your First-Aid Kit? Well, according to the experts at the CDC, you may want to keep the following:
- Rubber gloves (sterile)
- Eye-Wash Solution
- Anti-contaminant cloth masks
- Petroleum Jelly
- Soap / Antibiotic Towelettes
- Burn Ointment
- Pain Relievers
This is an impartial list, and of course all lists should be tailored to you or your family’s needs, especially if anyone in your residence has a specific illness or condition. You could always check with a doctor beforehand to ensure your First-Aid Kit is adequate in providing for your group in a time of crisis.
Here are some other supplies recommended to have on-hand in times of emergency:
- Matches (stored in dry, water-resistant packaging)
- Palatable Water (distilled, preferably: 1 gallon per person per day)
- Canned fruits, vegetables and meat
- Energy-foods: granola, nuts, crackers, peanut butter
- Can-opener (non-electric)
- Jackets, mittens / gloves, scarves, etc.
- Sleeping bags
- Fire extinguisher
Again, these are just some of the bare necessities. When in doubt, always overstock if possible. And when the weather becomes severe, avoid going outdoors at all costs. As you’ll see in the next section, road travel in precarious climates is exponentially more dangerous than travelling in normal conditions: so only get in your vehicle if relocation is an absolute must.
The Dangers of Driving in the Snow
In 1888, the northeast region of the United States was hit with what came to be known as the “Great Blizzard.” Recorded levels of snowfall were registered as high as 60 inches, with drifts accumulating in excess of fifty feet. Back then, of course, vehicular travel wasn’t a tremendously important means of conveyance, as it is today. But if our current situation does indeed rival the Great Blizzard of 1888, driving will become a near-impossibility.
Mayor Bill de Blasio has already authorized the closing of the Lincoln and Holland tunnels, which will occur at 11pm on the night of January 26th. Buses and many subways will experience decreased and/or complete cessation of services.
As we mentioned earlier, it is in the best interest of safety that you remain indoors. When it is declared safe to resume travelling the roadways, here are some helpful hints to aid your snow-driving ability:
- Never follow other cars too closely- but leave an even more exaggerated gap when roads are snowy or icy. The grip on your tires is dramatically less efficient in stopping your vehicle when the driving surface is slippery.
- If a short stop does become necessary, DO NOT slam on the brakes. Once your wheels lock up you are no longer in control of your vehicle. Instead, ease off of the accelerator, keeping the wheels free to maintain rotation, which will leave you with some traction to work with.
- This one may seem obvious, but keep your speed down. Try and fight feelings of impatience by remembering that if you speed recklessly and ultimately lose control of your vehicle, you will likely spend far more time coping with the ensuing accident than you would have lost by simply taking it easy over the course of your trip.
When Accidents Happen, Contact Kaplan Lawyers PC
The sobering truth is that the likelihood of accidents increase tenfold in the advent of a storm; especially one as serious as the one being forecasted now. Ice and snow on pathways and steps can lead to slips and falls that could cause catastrophic hip, leg, head or arm injuries. Icy roadways are perilous for inexperienced and seasoned drivers alike, reducing motorists’ abilities to stop in a pinch. Great drifts of snow can weigh grievously on architecture provoking cave-ins and property damage and unexpected injury to passers-by. If any of this has happened to you or someone you love, it may be well within your rights to file for compensation that will pay for your medical bills and redress the toll of your mental anguish. We at Kaplan Lawyers PC hope that this article has been informative, and we hope that it allows you to navigate throughout the dangers of this storm unscathed. However, if you’ve been injured in any way, we implore you to seek the legal counsel of Kaplan Lawyers PC. Our professional and compassionate team of attorneys can help evaluate your case and keep you informed as to the extent of your rights. With Kaplan Lawyers PC, you’ll have a strong ally fighting on your side. Contact us today for a free and easy consultation.