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Posted on: December 2, 2019

Tips to Prepare for Winter Weather

Driving on wet roads in winter weather

Here's some information on how to protect your home in winter weather, prepare your vehicle for slick wet roads, and create emergency-supply kits for your home and car. We also have a handy flyer with all of this information.


  • Conduct annual reviews of your property or rental insurance to address coverage needs and ask about flood insurance or coverage for sewer/drain back-up.
  • Complete a detailed home inventory of your possessions and keep in a safe place away from your home.
  • Check smoke detectors and carbon-monoxide detectors and change batteries at least once a year; replace units every 10 years.
  • Clean your fireplace chimney.
  • Keep instructions and tools to turn off gas, electricity and water in a safe and readily available place.


  • Clean leaves and debris out of gutters and away from storm drains to prevent flooding.
  • Trim shrubbery away from siding to prevent insect and moisture damage.
  • Replace weather stripping and caulk that has lost contact with surfaces.

Prepare your Vehicle

  • Consider replacing your wiper blades if they're over a year old and top off your washer fluid.
  • Check your tire tread and pressure. Ensure tires are evenly worn.

Sign Up for NIXLE: Get text and email alerts on emergency situations and important city advisories. Go to or text your zip code to 888777 to sign up. 


BEFORE the storm:

  • Keep copies of insurance policies, important documents, and other valuables in a safe place and in a water-resistant container. Consider a safe-deposit box for critical documents or items.
  • Store emergency supplies and contact information in a handy location at work and home. Consider storing some emergency supplies in your car as well; these items should include;
    • Warm clothing, including hats and gloves
    • Blankets
    • Non-perishable food (such as nuts, trail mix and power bars) and drinking water
    • Reflective triangles and brightly colored cloth to make your vehicle more visible
    • Car charger for your cell phone
  • Discuss emergency plans with your family and those with disabilities.
  • Build an emergency kit and make a family communications plan. An emergency kit will serve you well in a storm, earthquake or any other disaster. Go to for our multi-page emergency-preparedness brochure. More information can also be found here:,, or 
  • Keep your car fueled and have some cash on hand. If electric power is cut off, gas stations and ATMs may not operate.
  • Keep some water-proofing materials handy for emergency repairs, including sandbags, plastic sheeting, ply- wood or lumber, duct tape, etc.
  • Prevent storm drain blockages by keeping leaves and other debris out of streets, gutters, storm drains and catch basins.
  • Don’t forget your furry friends in your plan. Make sure they can get out of the cold and wet.

DURING the storm:

  • Avoid unnecessary trips. Limit your travel and stay home or in a safe location during storms.
  • Avoid areas that are subject to sudden flooding.
  • Do not drive across a flooded road or around barricades - you could become stranded.
  • If you must travel during the storm, dress in warm, loose layers of clothing. Advise others of your destination and estimated arrival time.
  • Keep pets inside.
  • Bookmark the City of Healdsburg website -- we will post emergency information and instruction on the homepage. In addition, be sure to follow us on Facebook and Nextdoor for this information. You can also tune into radio and TV for emergency information and instructions.
  • Please do NOT call 9-1-1 unless there is an imminent threat to life or another serious emergency. 
  • Report downed trees and drainage issues via the Utility Response Hotline (707)431-7000 or (855)755-6586.

AFTER the storm:

  • Stay tuned to your local radio or television for information and instructions.
  • Use flashlights—NOT lanterns, matches or candles—to examine buildings; flammables may be present.
  • Follow local instructions regarding the safety of drinking water. If in doubt, boil or purify water before drinking.
  • Avoid disaster areas; your presence could hamper rescue and other emergency operations, and you may be in danger.
  • Don’t use water that could be contaminated to wash dishes and hands, brush teeth, prepare food, make ice or baby formula.
  • If you smell natural or propane gas or hear a hissing noise, leave immediately and call 9-1-1.
  • Avoid downed power lines - report downed electrical lines and broken gas lines immediately by calling 9-1-1.
  • Do not turn on gas back on yourself. Call PG & E at 1-800-743-5000.

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