Do you have a File of Life?

“File Of Life” kits for Carlisle seniors are available at the COA office at Town Hall. In an emergency, the “File Of Life” card enables emergency medical technicians (EMTs) to obtain a quick medical history and vital personal information when a patient is unable to offer it.

The card, which is kept in a red plastic pocket labeled “File of Life,” lists the patient’s name, emergency contacts, health insurance policy and social security number, health conditions, medications including dosages, allergies, recent surgeries, religion, doctor’s name and whether or not there is a health care proxy or living will.

For more information about the “File of Life” program, call 1-978-371-2895.

Sign up for RUOK®

If you live alone, you may want to sign up for the free RUOK® Telephone Reassurance System. The system will call you at the predetermined time you request. When you answer, you’ll hear a short pre-recorded call message from the COA. If you don’t pick up after several tries, the police will personally try to reach you, and if there is still no reply they will stop by and check on you at home. This system has saved lives. Call the Council on Aging to sign up at 1-978-371-2895.

Winter storm safety tips

Before a winter storm

•Be informed by receiving alerts, warnings, and public safety information before, during, and after emergencies. Download the Massachusetts Alerts app.

• Create and review your family emergency plan.

• If you receive medical treatments or home health care services, work with your medical provider to determine how to maintain care and service if you are unable to leave your home for a period of time.

• Assemble an emergency kit. Add seasonal supplies to your emergency kit, such as extra winter clothing and blankets.

• Follow instructions from public safety officials.

• Fully charge your cellphone, laptop, and other electronic devices before a storm if power outages are expected.

• Consider purchasing a generator to provide power during an outage. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions and learn how to use it safely before an outage.

• Remove dead or rotting trees and branches around your home that could fall and cause injury or damage.

• Clear clogged rain gutters to allow water to flow away from your home. Melting snow and ice can build up if gutters are clogged with debris.

• Ensure your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms are working and have fresh batteries.

• Maintain heating equipment and chimneys by having them cleaned and inspected every year.

• Make sure your home is properly insulated. Caulk and weather-strip doors and windows to keep cold air out. Install storm windows or cover windows with plastic from the inside to provide insulation.

• Ensure you have sufficient heating fuel and consider safe back-up heating options such as fireplaces or woodstoves.

• Ensure your vehicle is ready for safe winter driving. Keep the gas tank at least half-full and have a winter emergency car kit in the trunk.

During a winter storm

• Minimize outdoor activities. Drive only if it is absolutely necessary. If you must drive, utilize MEMA’s winter driving safety tips.

• Dress for the season to protect against the elements. Dress in several layers of loose-fitting, lightweight clothing instead of a single heavy layer. Outer garments should be tightly woven and water repellent. Wear a hat, mittens (not gloves) and sturdy waterproof boots to protect your extremities. Cover your mouth with a scarf to protect your lungs.

• Watch for signs of frostbite and hypothermia.

After a winter storm

• Continue to monitor media for emergency information.

• Follow instructions from public safety officials.

• Call 9-1-1 to report emergencies, including downed power lines and gas leaks.

• Check with your local authorities or call 2-1-1 to find locations of warming centers or shelters near you or for other storm-related questions.

• In the event of power outages during cold weather, you may need to go to a warming center or emergency shelter to stay warm. Report power outages to your utility company.

• Stay away from downed utility wires. Always assume a downed power line is live.

• Stay off streets and roads until they are clear of snow.

• Use caution and take frequent breaks when shoveling snow to prevent overexertion. Overexertion can bring on a heart attack—a major cause of death in the winter.

• Clear exhaust vents from direct vent gas furnace systems to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning. Make sure your carbon monoxide detectors are working as it is a silent, odorless, killer.

• Clear snow from around vehicle exhaust pipes before starting the vehicle to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.

• Make sure emergency generators or secondary heating systems are well ventilated because their fumes contain carbon monoxide. 

• Dig out fire hydrants and storm drains in your neighborhood.

• Check your roof and clear accumulated snow to avoid roof collapses.

• Don’t park too close to corners so public safety vehicles and plows can maneuver safely.

• Be aware of children playing in the streets, particularly climbing on or running out from behind large snowdrifts. • Parents should remind their children to be aware of plowing operations and traffic.

• Be a good neighbor. Check on family, friends and neighbors, especially the elderly, those who live alone, those with medical conditions and those who may need additional assistance. ∆

Notice: deer hunting start dates

Youth Deer Hunt - Sept. 29

Paraplegic Hunt - Nov. 1

Archery  (Zones 10) - Oct. 1

Shotgun - Nov. 26 – Dec. 8

Primitive Firearms - Dec. 10

Police have drug disposal bags

The Carlisle Police now have drug disposal bags. Residents who want to dispose of bags but don’t want to use the station’s disposal container are welcome to pick up a bag or have one delivered to them. Pills are placed in the bag and water is added, which mixes with a chemical inside the lining of the bag, rendering the pills unusable. Chief of Police John Fisher said that residents are still able to deposit pills and sharps at the Police Station.

New emergency services available submitted by Chief John Fisher

The Carlisle Police Department is pleased to offer a new service to Carlisle residents. We added two new forms to our website that will provide contact information in case of emergency, titled ICE Forms on our website.

The first ICE form allows Carlisle parents or guardians to designate adults that may be contacted in the event they are unavailable to get home to their children. The “need” for this type of contact information was the idea of a Carlisle parent when they read an article about a mother (not from Carlisle) involved in a car crash on her way home from work. The mother was unconscious as a result of the injuries sustained in the collision, her children were elementary school aged and did not know where they could go or whom to call when the police arrived at their home. While the need for this information may not involve a case as dire as the one noted, there may be a variety of reasons a Carlisle parent or guardian may want the police to know who is authorized to be with or pick up their children in the event of an emergency. The information will be stored at the police department and only used in the event of an emergency.

The second ICE Form is for any adult who wants to leave similar directives. The form collects the adult’s information and then provides the space to list the cell, work and home contact information for other adults that the resident would like contacted in the event of an emergency when they are not able to provide it to the police. There have been recent cases where the Carlisle Police had no contact person for a Carlisle resident who became incapacitated at home.

Residents are encouraged to look at the forms by going to the town’s website at www.carlislema.gov, choosing the Police tab under Public Safety, finding the Downloadable Forms tab, and then looking at the ICE forms. If interested, fill in the desired form (both forms are in fillable format) and email, mail or drop off the forms.

Be a Mosquito friend 

Like what you’ve seen in The Mosquito? We could use your help. We are a non-profit paper and every contribution, no matter the size, helps. So please consider a donation to The Carlisle Mosquito Fund, 662A Bedford Road, Carlisle or online at www.carlislemosquito.org.

Garden Club welcomes new members

The Carlisle Garden Club is welcoming new members. The Garden Club is a nonprofit organization dedicated to gardening education, town beautification and supporting the Debbie Wright Scholarship. Each month features a speaker on a subject of horticultural interest and other opportunities to learn, contribute and have fun. Group projects include a bi-annual plant sale and garden tour, Pumpkins on the Common, maintenance of the rotary, and decorating wreaths with senior citizens. All are welcome, novice gardeners as well as experts. Visit the website at www.carlislegardenclub.org or contact Elizabeth Acquaviva or Peg Gladstone for more information. 

School meal applications available

The Carlisle Public School Food Service offers healthy meals every school day.  Free and reduced price meal benefits are available to qualifying families. For a free and reduced application, you may visit the school website at http://www.carlisle.k12.ma.us/Page/463 or call Sue Robichaud at 1-978-402-8666. You may also pick up a copy at the school kitchen. You may apply for free and reduced meals anytime during the school year.