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Don’t get left in the cold, be prepared

It’s about to get cold, really cold.

The National Weather Service in Jackson is predicting that the low Sunday will range from 15 to 25 degrees. That’s not the kind of cold Southwest Mississippi is accustomed to.

Temperatures may not rise above freezing between Sunday and Wednesday morning in some places. Potentially dangerous wind chills may also occur.

The arctic blast is still a couple of days away so you have time to prepare. Below are some basic cold-weather preparation tips.

• Protect pipes. Wrap any exposed faucets or water pipes to prevent freezing. Open kitchen and bathroom cabinets to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing. Run water at a trickle to help prevent freezing.

• Protect pets. Bring pets in or provide warm bedding and shelter. Remember to provide access to unfrozen water if they remain outside.

• Dress in layers. If you venture out, make sure you dress warmly. Know the signs of hypothermia.

• Be careful with heaters. If you use a space heater, place it on a hard surface and keep anything flammable at least three feet away.

• Don’t use the kitchen stove to heat your home.

• Don’t use heaters labeled for outdoor use only inside your home. Carbon monoxide poisoning can occur.

• Check on your neighbors. If you know of someone who does not have adequate heat in their home, check on them often during this cold snap. Better yet, invite them to your home if you can.

• Pay attention to the forecast. You can only be prepared if you know what to expect.