Nov. 18, 2019 / Newspaper Columns

By State Rep. Tarah Toohil (R-Luzerne) 

Freezing temperatures arrived this week, reminding us all of the importance of preparing for colder weather and winter travel.

Preparation is one key to successfully navigating winter roads. Prior to the winter driving season, you should have a mechanic check the brakes, battery, hoses and belts. Also, be sure to check your fluid levels, make sure your wipers don’t streak, ensure your heater and defroster are working properly, check to make sure all your lights are working, and ensure your tires are properly inflated and have sufficient tread depth.

Pack an emergency travel kit as well to store in the trunk. That kit should include a flashlight and batteries, battery-operated radio, jumper cables, cellphone and charger, snow shovel, matches and candles, first aid supplies, extra warm clothing and gloves, blanket, ice scraper, sand, bottled water and non-perishable food

When it’s cold outside, try to stay indoors as much as possible. If you must go outside, cover yours ears, head, mouth and face; dress in layers; don’t ignore your body shivering; and check on infants and senior citizens to ensure they are warm enough.

Finally, the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) reminds residents to write down, print or save toll-free outage hotlines for your electric utility and/or your natural gas utility, which are listed on your monthly bills and posted on the PUC website. The PUC also encourages you to call your utility company if an outage occurs and not to assume someone else has already done so.

I sometimes use this column to answer your questions regarding any state government-related matter. Please email them to me at As always, I look forward to hearing from you.

Representative Tarah Toohil
116th District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Contact: Rep. Toohil’s Office
717.260.6136 /