Cold weather readiness: 10 preparation and safety tips
From: Division of Campus Planning, Infrastructure, and Facilities, Virginia Tech Emergency Management
As temperatures begin to drop and winter weather arrives, it is important to keep the following tips in mind to ensure the safety of you and your living space.
If you live on-campus:
- Prevent freezing pipes by maintaining adequate heat in your room, apartment, or house. Keep your thermoset set around 65 degrees or higher. This is especially important when leaving for the holidays or breaks.
- Open curtains during the day to let in natural heat, then close them at night to keep heat in.
- To report heat-related repairs, save the following contact information:
- On-campus emergency repairs: Virginia Tech Division of Campus Planning, Infrastructure, and Facilities Customer Service Line: (540) 231-4300 (outside of normal business hours, which are Monday - Friday, 7:30 a.m. - 5 p.m., contact the Virginia Tech Police Department at (540) 382-4343).
- Off-campus, in some areas of Blacksburg repairs: Virginia Tech Electric Service: (540) 231-6437
- Non-emergency repairs: Virginia Tech Division of Campus Planning, Infrastructure, and Facilities outage and issue reporting link or repair email.
If you live off-campus, consider following up with your landlord or property management company on these winter preparations:
- Prevent freezing pipes by maintaining adequate heat in your apartment or house. Keep your thermoset set around 65 degrees or higher. This is especially important when leaving for the holidays or breaks. It is always a good idea to have a qualified technician check your heating system.
- Seal windows with plastic and double-sided tape to prevent heat from escaping and seal doors with foam, felt strips, spray foam, or a sock filled with rice to prevent heat from escaping.
- Replace dirty air filters in your heating system.
- Ensure that the recommended number of smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are in place. Check the operation of these and replace batteries if needed.
For all members of the Virginia Tech community:
- Prevent falls: Wear sturdy shoes with heavy treads to avoid falls on slippery surfaces.
- Heads up crossing streets and intersections: When roads are slippery, vehicles may not be able to stop.
- Prepare your car:
- Get a winter car kit ready that includes items like a shovel, scraper, windshield wiper fluid, salt, flashlight, water, snacks, and a blanket.
- Have your car serviced as the cold-weather season approaches, including checking the level of anti-freeze protection.
All students living off-campus should check with their landlord or property management company first before making any of the modifications recommended above.