TEXAS CITY, Texas -- Texans currently living in temporary housing units supplied by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) may want to take extra precautions due to expected freezing temperatures. Officials with FEMA and the Texas Division of Emergency Management (TDEM) offer the following safety recommendations:
- Only use the unit’s built-in heater. Occupants should not use kerosene heaters, kitchen stoves or ovens, or electric space heaters to heat living quarters.
- Ensure propane tanks are full.
- If the water hose to the unit has been insulated, make sure the electric heat strip is plugged into the outlet on the side of the unit.
- If the water hose to the unit has not yet been insulated, consider letting a trickle of water run at night to prevent freeze-up. Ensure drainage piping is not blocked before taking this step.
- Do not block unit exhaust vents.
- Use care when utilizing any propane appliances.
- Know where your shut-off valve is located and how to shut it off.
- Always be sure to have proper ventilation in your home.
- Never use grills or camp stoves indoors.
- Keep flammable and combustible materials away from open flames.
- Keep children and pets away from all heaters to avoid accidental burns.
- Don't assume that the smell of propane is because the tank is low.
- Never place your head near or directly over the valves on your storage tank.
- If traveling, shut off all appliances before leaving home.
- Know where the fire extinguisher is in the unit and learn how to use it.
- Learn how to use the emergency window opening devices in the unit.
- Do not store gasoline or other flammable liquids in or under the unit.
- Do not store gasoline-powered vehicles or equipment in the unit.
- Never smoke in bed
For concerns with the unit’s water hose or other maintenance issues, occupants of the FEMA-supplied units in Galveston, Brazoria, Harris, Chambers, Jefferson, Hardin, Liberty, and Tyler counties can call the FEMA Sullivan Maintenance toll-free line at 1-800-591-7685. Occupants in Orange, Jasper, and Newton counties can call the FEMA RV Services Maintenance toll free line at 1-866-757-5766.
FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.