Once you’ve winterized your home it’s time to curl up by the fire and enjoy the snow outside, right? Almost. There are still some important safety tips to follow to keep you and your home safe throughout the colder months.

The Home Safety Council urges homeowners to protect themselves against house fires by using portable space heaters safely and properly using and maintaining fireplaces and wood-burning stoves. Keep flammables away from both, ensure that they are in clean and good working condition, and never leave them unattended. Read more about fire safety here.

Snow safety is important as well. Storms in Truckee-Lake Tahoe can drop feet of snow at a time. Ensure your pantry is stocked and you have plenty of fresh drinking water in case it takes more than a few hours for snow to be cleared. Sometimes snow and ice can affect power lines and cause power bumps or loss. Keep candles and flashlights handy, along with board games and cards, to keep your family in the light and entertained until power is restored. Oh, and remember to keep lots of cozy blankets handy too.

As you shovel snow around your home be sure to knock loose any large accumulations along the edge of your roof as well as large icicles which may drop and cause hazardous conditions. Carefully sweep snow away from propane and gas tanks and nozzles to prevent accidental damage and gas leaks. And last, be sure to salt or sand walkways to prevent ice accumulation and slippery conditions.

Read more about weather safety and awareness and get tips for driving in inclement weather.