The Met Office has issued a Level 3 cold weather alert across Southwest England, and South Somerset District Council is asking you to look out for others and to take extra care during the cold and icy weather.
A Level 3 alert is triggered when severe weather is occurring, meaning average temperatures have dropped to 2C and widespread ice and heavy snow is present.
A District Council spokesman said, “Remember to check weather forecasts and plan the day around them. Take extra care if outside to prevent any accidental slips from icy and snowy pavements.
“If you have to go out, dress warmly and wear non-slip shoes to limit any falls. Also be sure to tell someone where you are going and an expected time when you will return. If you have a mobile phone, try to carry this with you, charged, so you can contact someone in case of an emergency.
“When indoors it is critical that people stay warm, particularly if you’re 65 or over, have long term health conditions or young children. Wear lots of thin layers, eat warm food and remember that moving about will help keep you warm.”
The Cold Weather Plan for England, available at www.gov.uk/phe sets out a series of actions that health and social care organisations, voluntary groups, and individuals can take to help reduce cold-related illnesses and deaths.
Top tips to prepare for colder weather:
- Look out for friends and family who may be vulnerable to the cold and ensure they have access to warm food and drinks and are managing to heat their homes adequately.
- Try to maintain indoor temperatures to at least 18C, particularly if you are not mobile, have long term illness or are 65 or over.
- Stay tuned for weather forecasts, ensure you are stocked with food and medications in advance, have deliveries or ask a friend to help.
- Take weather into account when planning your activity over the following days.
- If eligible seek entitlements and benefits such as Winter Fuel Payments and Cold Weather Payments, which are available to some.
- If you meet the criteria register for priority service with your energy and water suppliers.
- Avoid exposing yourself to cold or icy outdoor conditions if you are at a higher risk of cold related illness or falls
- Discuss with friends and neighbours about clearing snow and ice from in front of your house and public walkways nearby.
Follow #winterready (for message alert levels 0 and 1) and #weatheraware (alert levels 2 to 4) on Twitter for winter health advice.