As a large swath of Eastern Canada hunkers down in advance of an expected ice storm, tells you how to get prepared:

What to do in an ice storm

  • In a storm, ice often accumulates on branches, power lines and buildings. If going outside is necessary following the storm, be aware of branches or wires that could break due to the added weight. Keep in mind that ice, branches or power lines can continue to break and fall for several hours after the end of precipitation.
  • Never approach power lines, as they could be charged and cause electrocution. Stay back at least 10 metres.
  • Avoid driving if possible, as even a small amount of freezing rain can make roads extremely slippery.
  • Give road maintenance crews several hours after freezing rain ends so they have enough time to spread sand or salt on icy roads.
  • If you live on a farm, promptly move livestock into a sheltered area where feed is available.
  • For any type of severe weather, the government recommends having an emergency plan for the household so that all occupants know what to do. The plan should identify “safe places” where everyone can meet if they must leave home during the emergency, and include a list of tasks to complete ahead of time. To download a plan, click here.
  • The government also recommends storing an emergency kit with basic supplies including a flashlight, battery-operated radio, food and water. Separate emergency kits should also be kept in vehicles. (Source: Government of Canada)

In a statement Friday, Toronto Mayor Rob Ford also provided some instructions to city residents ahead of the storm:

  • Avoid parking on streets so snowplows can get through
  • Don’t over-exert and take frequent breaks when shovelling
  • Offer to help elderly neighbours or those individuals who may require extra assistance
  • Pick up critical medications prior to the storm