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Winter poses dangers for those at risk

by | Jan 12, 2024 | Area News, Latest

Older Texans and those with preexisting health conditions or disabilities face extra dangers from winter cold, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
Such people are especially vulnerable to the health impacts of power outages due to their reliance on electrically powered medical equipment such as ventilators, oxygen and power wheelchairs, FEMA said.
The agency warns that winter storms can often lead to carbon monoxide poisoning related to power outages, hypothermia, frostbite and mental health impacts.
Based in Denton, FEMA Region 6 has a population of over 40 million people across the states of Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas.
Of those, 13%, or just over 5.4 million people, have some form of a disability. And 15% of the total population – 5.8 million people — is over the age of 65.
That’s why FEMA’s WinterReady campaign is so important in helping vulnerable populations be better prepared for winter weather.
The agency is sharing general preparedness for everyone, but also highlighting specific actions and questions to ask if you or a friend, family member or neighbor needs to take specific steps to be ready this season. Find and share information on social media using #WinterReady and visit ready.gov/winter-ready.
General winter preparedness tips including writing down emergency contacts, programmed in your phone or placed somewhere readily available.
Texans should also be stocked up on nonperishable foods and medical prescriptions and create a plan for alternative sources of power.
FEMA said developing a comprehensive winter emergency plan and emergency preparedness kit tailored to your unique needs will ensure you are well prepared this winter.
Considerations include specific care for medical conditions or dietary requirements, mobility assistance and emergency transportation and communication plans.

For more stories about the Murphy community see the next print, or digital edition of the Murphy Monitor. Subscribe today and support local journalism.

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