Officials with the South Carolina Emergency Management Division started off Winter Weather Preparedness Week Monday by urging South Carolinians to prepare for the possibility of bad weather during the upcoming winter season.

 “Take this time now and be prepared for the event. It’s a very simple message: communicate. Communicate and prepare your family for what may be coming,” said Maj. Gen. Van McCarty, the assistant adjutant general  of the South Carolina National Guard. 

At the press conference, McCarty and others reminded South Carolina citizens about the ice storm of 2014, where there were more than 364,000 power outages statewide, and more than 550 people needed emergency shelter. This resulted in more than $260 million in damages in the state.

 Officials gave the citizens safety tips to follow, including having have three days worth of food and water; having on hand weather supplies such as shovels and salt; insulating pipes; knowing the location of emergency shut offs; and being aware of carbon monoxide poisoning.

And they emphasized the danger of icy roads. 

“The most critical partnership we have is with the motoring public,” said South Carolina Department of Public Safety Maj. Rob Woods. We encourage the public…when possible stay off the roads and stay at home with these types of conditions.” 

To find out more on how you can better prepare for the winter season you can visit the SCEMD’s website or download their app. 

Maj. Gen. Van McCarty of the South Carolina National Guard urged South Carolinians to begin making preparations for the winter season by winterizing their homes and vehicles.   

Maj. Rob Woods said that even though the S.C. Department of Public Safety works with state partners to help them when dealing with a winter storm, the most critical partnership is with the citizens of South Carolina.