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Heavy snowfall and freezing weather


Snow safety tips

At home

Have the following items available: a battered-powered radio with extra batteries, flashlights, high calorie food, heating fuel and usual medications.

Check: air leakage (by caulking windows and doors), check roof condition and rain gutters, tree branches (if too long it is advisable to trim them) and your heating equipment. 

When driving

Make sure to have chains in good condition, flashlights and a blanket.

Check battery condition, brakes, tires, heating and windshield and keep your gas tank full.


Stay informed about the weather forecast and if you have to travel, check the road conditions and the routes you will take:

Servei Meteorològic de Catalunya (SMC)

Servei Català de Trànsit

Portal de la mobilitat

012 Atenció Ciutadana

In case of an emergency follow the instructions of the authorities. Keep updated through social media, radio, television, webs, twitter and so on.

Follow also the specific tips for cold wave.

Remember, if you need help during the emergency, call 112.

At home

Listen to the radio.

Make a proper use of central heating and unplug any unnecessary electrical device. Avoid stoves or other gasoline, propane, natural gas or charcoal-burning devices inside.

In isolated or non-urban areas allow faucets to drip (running water, even at a trickle, helps prevent pipes from freezing.) and turn off the automatic watering.

In case of snowfall cooperate by clearing the snow from the sidewalks and steps next to your home as well as the roads to rural areas.

If there is accumulation of snow on the roof, terraces or balconies, shovel the snow throwing it over the sides away from the building.

Make sure you have the necessary medicaments if you are on a long-term treatment or have a chronic disease.

Do not place garbage outside when the garbage collectors are not running.

Do not use the phone:  telephone lines must be kept free for emergency.

Imatge dins de casa


Dress warmly. Wear two layers of loose-fitting, lightweight, warm clothing. Mittens are warmer than gloves.

Protect face and head avoiding cold air go into your lungs.

Avoid strenuous physical exercise: you are at risk of injury.

Children and elderly should stay indoors.


Information for drivers

Plan ahead your route

Travel only if strictly necessary, following at all times the advice of the Servei Català de Trànsit (Traffic Service of Catalonia) and checking the current road conditions and closures. Look for secure and main roads which are not affected by the snowfall.

Avoid driving at night: dangers and risks are hard to spot.

Let someone know your destination, route, and when you expect to arrive. Avoid travelling on your own.

Make sure you know the location of the gas stations on your way and plan where you could take shelter in case of snowfall.


Check your car condition, car maintenances and equipment.

Check tyre pressure (also pressure on the spare tyre), brakes condition, lights and batteries.

Keep snow chains in your car and make sure you know how to fit them.

Verify that fluids are kept topped up, especially windscreen wash to the right concentration and level, anti-freeze and oil.

Fill fuel tank before a long trip and stop to fill-up every 100 km.

Bring the cellular phone fully charged reflectors for signalling, blankets and a flashlight.


Caught in your car in a snowfall

Look for shelter. If you cannot find any, stay inside your car because car tyres insulate your car from the cold. Tie a brightly colored cloth to the antenna to signal distress.

Leave the heating on and open the window slightly for ventilation. Do not fall asleep with the engine on.

Clear the snow away regularly from your car and exhaust pipe making sure smoke does not get inside your car.




If the snowfall surprises you on the road, drive with a lot of precaution and leave a free way to allow the passage of the snowplows and of the services of emergency.

Do not take over snowplows.

Driving tips with snow and sleet

Drive slowly. If the road is not secure, go back and look for shelter.

If there is snow on the road, pull off in a place where you do not interrupt circulation, fit snow chains to the front wheels.

Try to drive on fresh snow.

Turn on the head lights to low beam and fog lights.

Keep extra distance from the other cars and do not take over.

If it starts to snow, drive slowly and softly and if necessary reduce speed.

If you are sliding, avoid acceleration and do not use the brakes. If necessary, release your brakes with constant pressure

Be careful in shaded areas, bridges because there can be ice. If so, do not use the brakes.

If you are driving a high-sided vehicle, remember that:

  • You cannot take over other vehicles.
  • Traffic authorities can close or limit your circulation. Keep informed and aware of current road conditions and respect roadblocks.
Update:  26.10.2018