BUFFALO, N.Y. — Heading into a snowstorm, being prepared can make a significant difference.
Elizabeth Carey with AAA said, "We're calling in extra crews and we always make sure our drivers are all set, make sure that they have a warm change of clothes in the vehicle, we send out snacks with them and things like that so that they can try and get through it as well because they're out there in the thick of it."
Carey advises motorists not to drive if you don't have to, but if for some reason you do need to hit the road, make sure you have what you need packed.
"Of course a snow brush, keep a shovel in there, sometimes people will keep even kitty litter in there for if they do get stuck in some icy conditions, a little traction can help you get out," Carey said.
"We remind people to keep a flashlight in there, and some warm clothes, a blanket, and a few snacks in case you do get stranded."
Carey also stressed the importance of making sure you have a phone charger in the car.
"We get phone calls all the time saying, 'My car broke down,' or 'I'm stuck in the snow,' or, 'I went off the road and my phone's about to die.' " she said.
When it comes to your home, Bill Malczewski, a manager with Hector's Hardware on Clinton Street, has seen it all.
"We haven't had real snow since maybe the end of December, so go out and try to start your snowblower," Malczewski said. "It's probably got old gas, two or three months old. You can get some fresh gas or some of the new gas that's all synthetic. This lasts for two years."
Malczewski told 2 on Your Side now is the time to find your shovel and gloves and maybe even invest in rock salt.
He added, "Fresh gas, oil, spark plug, shovel, you're ready."
Both NYSEG and National Grid are monitoring the weather situation and preparing for potential power outages.
"We're taking a very proactive position here," NYSEG Corporate Communications Manager Michael Jamison said, adding, "We've brought on additional resources that will be pre-staged in our Lancaster division office."
Ken Kujawa, the National Grid WNY Regional Director, offered some advice to customers.
"If you do see any downed wires, please assume that they are live and do not touch them. Stay away from them. Please call National Grid or call the police department," Kujawa said/
He added, "If you are going to operate a portable generator, please make sure that you open your main breaker and place that generator as far away from your home as possible. Do not place it in your home. Do not place it in your garage."
Kujawa said if customers do experience outages, they're encouraged to call National Grid at 1-800-867-5222.
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