Winter safety: What to have on hand for a winter storm

Snow-covered street and cars with a lonely pedestrian. Heavy snowstorm

Let’s face it, winter weather doesn’t always cooperate — especially in Canada! It can be brutal and unpredictable at times. If you’ve ever been caught up in an intense winter storm, you know it can really throw a wrench in your plans. If you haven’t, it can leave you stuck at home without access to everyday essentials like food, power, and even water. To help you be prepared for the worst, here are some tips for safely stocking your home in case of a winter storm. Having these things on hand in the event of a winter storm can be game changing. 

Water jugs

Do you ever notice those huge jugs of water at the supermarket or drugstore? They’re not cheap but during a winter storm that knocks off your water for days they can be a real lifesaver. Bring one or two home the next time you see them and store them in a closet in case of an emergency situation. 

Crank flashlight 

A flashlight in a storm is only as strong as its battery lifetime. Instead of buying a traditional flashlight, look for a crank flashlight that you wind up to power. These can always be recharged by cranking, making them perfect for extended winter storms.


It’s a good idea to have some decorative lanterns on hand. All you’ll need to do is light some tea candles for them to illuminate your apartment in a winter storm. Go for lanterns with handles so you can walk around with them to light your way.

Canned foods

In a winter storm, you’ll likely lose power. This can last hours or days depending on the severity of the storm. When you lose power, you lose refrigeration, so it’s important to have canned food that you can eat on hand if you can’t trust the food in your fridge. Look for filling canned foods like hearty soups and stews. Having canned fruit and vegetables on hand is a good idea, too. Try to maintain a minimum of a week’s worth of canned food for you and your roommates or family members in your pantry.


When you lose power, you lose heat. Your apartment can get pretty cold pretty fast, so ensure you have several blankets at home to bundle up with. Look for heavy and warm blankets made of fabrics like flannel, fleece, faux fur, velvet and wool.

Warm clothing

It’s a good idea to own a pair or two of long underwear, big sweaters, hats, scarves, mittens, snow pants and other insulating clothing items. These things will help to keep you warm when all the heat escapes from your apartment. If these aren’t items you’d wear normally,  store them in an emergency kit in a closet so you can find them easily. 

We hope you stock up on these winter storm essentials. Better safe than sorry!

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