Heavy snow expected to wreak more havoc around Berks

BIRDSBORO, Pa. - With so much snow expected to fall on Berks County, emergency responders said there are things you need to keep in mind to stay safe, even if you plan to stay inside.

Snow is expected to fall, and tree branches and limbs could fall with it. A heavy branch broke in Robeson Township and landed on John Cole's mailbox. Recent heavy winds and rain weakened many trees and branches.

"It's a freak of nature. It could have happened at night. Someone comes by, hits it with a car," Cole said.

The threat is real and the Chief Scott Gullo of the Friendship Fire Company of Geigertown said people need to be aware of that if they're driving or even walking in the days ahead.

"It did take some trees down, but there are still a lot that didn't come down yet, and potential of heavy wet snow landing on these trees, more are going to come down," Gullo said. "They are going to take electric out."

The chief said there could be a large number of power outages, adding that outages, plus the cold, can lead to people taking dangerous risks.

"The bad points with no electric, people turn to alternative sources for electric and heat," he said.

Before you try to warm up your home, make sure your generator is wired properly. Don't use undersized electric cords, and make sure any exhaust vents are clear of snow.

"The exhaust vents, especially with gas appliances, it's going to cause carbon monoxide in the home," said Gullo.

So while you're being alert to keep your home safe, know that first responders are going to be alert, monitoring the conditions and ready to respond, if needed.

"All these cars, all of them are all-wheel-drive, so that makes it easier," said Trooper David Beohm, a public information officer for the Pennsylvania State Police.

Emergency crews will focus on emergency calls. They ask that you not call police asking for rides or road conditions.

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