Winter Ready

Read our top tips to stay #WinterReady

Weather alert

View full warnings on the Met Office Cold Weather Alert site.

Sign up to receive extreme weather alerts in West Sussex.  

Winter safety

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Follow us on @WSHighways to know when our fleet of gritters are out and about this winter and if any parts of our road network have been affected by severe weather.

View our gritting routes

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

For the latest information relating to Covid-19, winter vaccinations, lateral flow tests, self isolation, government changes or support during the pandemic please visit our Coronavirus web pages.

Download the NHS COVID-19 app and keep your Bluetooth and contact tracing 'on' to stay informed in case you come into contact with a positive case.

Stay safe and well

Get a free flu jab!

If you are eligible for the flu vaccine, get it now - it's free because you need it.

Find out if you are eligible for a flu vaccination by visiting the NHS website.

The flu virus is active in winter and far more serious than you think. If you get flu and Covid-19 at the same time, research shows you're more likely to be seriously ill.

If you’re worried about flu, the best thing to do is to contact your GP, practice nurse or pharmacist and book an appointment.

Stock up and eat well

Regular hot meals and drinks will keep you warm, and stocking up on tinned or frozen foods will mean and you don’t have to venture out when it’s cold or icy. 

You can order hot meals and have them delivered to your home by visiting the Meals on Wheels website.

What if I do need to go out?

If you do need to venture out, don’t forget to drive safely and check road conditions before you leave. 

Visit the Met Office to get some top tips on preparing a winter kit for your car and what vehicle checks to make before a long journey, and follow the Government's advice about driving in adverse weather conditions.

There is also lots of advice on our website about what you can do before, during and after a flood. So take action now and make sure you’re prepared for every eventuality this winter.

What if I, or a member of my family feel unwell?

If you or a member of your family are unwell, don’t panic. Act quickly and don’t wait for it to get worse.

Speak to your pharmacist, as they are fully qualified to advise you on the best course of action.

More information on staying well this winter is available on the NHS Stay Well website.

Safe and Well Visits

Safe and well visits are a free service offered by West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service to those aged over 65 or those living with disabilities.

It involves a prearranged visit to your home on how to make it safer. If you would like to request a visit please call 0345 872 9719 or visit the West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service website.

Stay warm

Cold weather can affect your health and the people most likely to be affected are the elderly, the very young, and people with pre-existing medical conditions.

However, there are lots of ways you can help yourself and your family in the cold weather, such as:

Get your heating system checked

Make sure your boiler and heating system is working safely and efficiently.

Keeping warm can help to prevent colds, flu and more serious health problems such as heart attacks, strokes, pneumonia and depression so remember to try and keep your heating to a constant temperature between 18°C and 21°C during the day and at least 18°C at night.

Please ensure you also have working smoke alarms and BS EN 50291 standard carbon monoxide alarms in your home.

Keep moving and wrap up

Any activity, even cleaning, gets the circulation going and makes you feel warmer.

Wear multiple layers of clothing, indoors and out, and move around at least once an hour. You should also avoid sitting still for long periods.

Keep your bedroom window closed on winter nights

Breathing in cold air can be bad for your health as it increases the risk of chest infections so keep your windows closed where possible.

Check your water pipes and keep them insulated

Check pipes are lagged and know where to turn off your water supply. Not only is getting your boiler checked a good idea but wrapping up water pipes with lagging to insulate them for when the cold weather arrives can also help.

It’s also a good idea to leave your heating on low - around 14°C - to keep water circulating around your pipes.

Warm Home service

If you’re over 65, living in a cold home or have a long term health condition, you may be eligible for the Age UK’s Warm Home service.

It can help increase your income to pay for energy bills and help make your home more energy efficient.

Sign up for weather warnings

Don’t forget to sign up for our newsletter where you will receive weather alert warnings.

Keep an eye on your neighbours or relatives

Make sure they are safe, warm and well. 

Hypothermia is a danger in cold weather so look after elderly and vulnerable people by making sure they are heating their house correctly. If you think someone has hypothermia, call 999.

For more information on staying warm, go to:

Keeping Warm and Energy Advice;
Dealing with extreme weather;
Preparing for emergencies;
• Follow us on Twitter for regular updates @WSCCNews, @WSCCResilience and @wspublichealth.

Stay thrifty

Don’t pay more than you need to

Send regular meter readings to your energy supplier to ensure that you only pay for the gas and electricity you’ve used. Citizens Advice have a handy guide to reading your meter if you’re not sure what to do.

Warm Home Discount

This scheme helps low income households with their energy costs. Participating energy suppliers provide a one-off discount of £140 on your electricity bill between September and March. If you don’t receive it automatically, you will need to apply through your electricity supplier or call 0800 731 0214.

Don’t let the heat escape

There are grants available to help households on a low income with the costs of insulating lofts and repairing or replacing a boiler. Your district or borough council may offer grants to qualifying households and provide information about home energy efficiency.

All West Sussex residents can get FREE tailor-made home energy advice from the West Sussex Citizens Advice home energy telephone service. They can provide details on local and national financial support, dealing with energy debt and how to make your home more energy efficient.

Phone 01243 974063* (Monday to Friday 10am- 4pm) or email
*local call charges or mobile data use may apply, please check your provider. If you are unable to call or are worried about your mobile credit you can email and request a call back.

Stay in touch

Useful contacts

Useful contacts

West Sussex Wellbeing Hubs

The Wellbeing Hubs can offer further support to keep you and your family healthy. Visit the West Sussex Wellbeing website or call:

Adults' CarePoint

For social care support enquiries, or for information on telecare services, call 01243 642121 or visit West Sussex Connect to Support.

Power cuts

To report or get information about power cuts, call 105.

If you need extra help during power cuts, contact the electricity power provider for your area:

Be prepared

If your community would like to develop its own Community Resilience Plan, please contact

Vulnerable Risk Register

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