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The University Star




The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

Hays County urges community to prepare for severe winter weather

Winter+storm+stroller
Winter storm stroller

After thousands of community members were left without water or power earlier this year due to Winter Storm Uri, the Hays County Office of Emergency Services (OES) is urging residents to prepare for any potential weather events this winter season. 
While OES is stocking up on water and non-perishable food to distribute if needed, unsafe driving conditions, like earlier this year, may prevent it from reaching citizens in a timely manner. With this in mind, OES Director Mike Jones encourages individuals to take their own precautions.
“February’s freeze event showed where we have a need in the community,” Jones said in a county wide press release. “When the power and water went out for days at a time, we saw how unprepared most of our residents were.”
Jones suggests citizens to have access to a gallon of water per day for each member of their household should utilities stop working. In February, burst pipes and drops in water pressure caused by the storm led to water quality issues and accessibility. In response, the Veteran of Foreign Wars Post 3413 helped distribute potable water and fill up portable containers.
Jones also encourages citizens to invest in propane burners, outdoor grills and other alternate sources of heat to prepare food. Personal generators may also be helpful but should never be used indoors.
Residents should also sign up to receive emergency alerts by phone, email or text through Warn Central Texas. Hays Informed and the OES Facebook page will also provide updates as possible.
OES also recognizes students living on campus may experience additional difficulties preparing for inclement weather. Last year, dangerous road conditions caused Chartwells to experience delays in food delivery. This, combined with power-outages, led to closures and shortages in dining halls across campus. OES Communication Manager Kim Hilsenbeck recommends students living on campus to have their own supply of food in case of a similar situation.
“You want to be able to be resourceful and have some stuff there for yourself or for your roommates,” Hilsenbeck said. “Maybe help the people in your dorm, you know, who can’t go anywhere.”
For additional tips on emergency preparedness, visit the Hays Informed website.

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