Government urge public to get Ready for Winter

THE last two years have placed Berwickshire and the rest of Scotland well and truly in the grip of winter and with that in mind the Government have launched a campaign urging people to prepare should heavy snowfall and sub-zero temperatures strike again.

‘Ready for Winter?’ is being delivered in partnership with the British Red Cross and a range of public, private and voluntary sector partners.

On the back of research which shows the majority of Scots are concerned about the prospect of severe weather episodes, that most don’t feel personally prepared for an emergency situation, and that many people would welcome information and advice on how to prepare and cope, the ‘Ready for Winter?’ campaign will: remind individuals and families of the risks and consequences of being underprepared for the impact of severe winter weather; offer information and advice on the simple steps that people, businesses and communities can take to reduce those risks and highlight the range of information, support and resources available across all sectors and all regions of Scotland.

The campaign, which is due to run until mid-November, will include a range of online resources and will feature integrated marketing activity across TV, national and local press, news websites and social media. It follows a call from the British Red Cross for specific public resilience campaign work, similar to that already delivered in a number of other countries.

Speaking at the launch of the campaign, Scotland’s Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill, who has responsibility for resilience issues, commented:

“No-one can say with any certainty what this winter might bring, but after the severe weather conditions we experienced in the past two years, we have worked with all our partners in the public, private and voluntary sector to learn the lessons and improve and invest in our services so that we are in a position to hope for the best but prepare for the worst.”

He said the public can take “small but sensible steps” now which help if their communities are hit by extreme weather.

These include: being aware of the risks, planning appropriately, agreeing emergency contacts and making necessary arrangements; making houses and flats more energy efficient, protecting pipes, being aware how to turn off water and power, and having adequate food and medicine; ensuring vehicles are well maintained, carry an emergency kit in the boot, and check road and weather conditions before travelling.