OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – As the state prepares for a sudden drop in temperatures, the Red Cross is offering some tips for Oklahomans ahead of the winter weather.

The Red Cross says it takes just a few minutes to prepare your home for the weather.

“Preparedness builds resiliency within your home and your community, and it lessens the impact of a disaster on your household. So, please do what you can to stay prepared,” said Linda Medford, Regional Preparedness Programs Manager for the Red Cross of Kansas and Oklahoma. “Start small with a plan of action and a go bag, and build on it as you can.”

  • Have an emergency plan in place. Know who your support network will be in case you need help or a place to stay.
  • Drain outside faucets so they don’t freeze and burst. Insulate them as best you can.
  • Make sure you have plenty of heating fuel, be it propane, wood, or other.
  • Check your smoke alarms and be sure they are working properly. If you don’t have any, the Red Cross can install them for free. Visit redcross.org to find information.
  • Keep your phones charged and have a backup power source ready in case the power goes out.
  • Keep your vehicle fueled. You never know if you may have to evacuate your home or could get stranded on the road. You want to be able to stay warm until help arrives.
  • Make sure a roadside emergency kit is in your car and has everything you need in case you get stranded: blankets, gloves, flares, water, snacks.
  • Remember your pets. Give them extra blankets or something to keep them warm. They withstand the cold about like we do. Bring them indoors if you have to. Check on outdoor animals and see that they have water and food that isn’t frozen.
  • Check on your senior adult neighbors. Make sure they have everything they need to shelter in place if needed.
  • Have a go bag ready with all the essentials in case you must leave your home because you’ve lost power or heat. You should have bottled water, snacks, a flashlight, extra clothes, medications and emergency info, including insurance rep and utility numbers, medical and doctor info. 
  • Go through that preparedness bag and replace anything outdated or perishable.
  • Have proof of residency on hand. Update your driver’s license with the correct address or have a copy of a current utility bill. These are things you will need in the event you need disaster relief assistance or if you need to get back into your neighborhood after a disaster occurs.

On Thursday evening, a cold front is expected to move through the state and dramatically drop temperatures.

On Friday, high temperatures are expected to only be in the 40s.