With weather warnings left, right and centre it is important to know how to stay safe this winter and Kent County Council has a few words of advice.

A level three weather alert has been issued for the Kent region by the Met Office, which triggers actions in the NHS, public health and social care to help vulnerable people.

Kent can expect some very cold, icy weather for the next couple of days with more snow heading their way on Wednesday.

Peter Oakford, KCC Cabinet Member for Public Health, said: “It is vital that during this prolonged period of severe weather, people act to keep themselves and their home warm – even if this is just by heating the bedroom and living room.

“We’re also urging people to assist their local community – is there someone you can help by bringing in groceries? Every year, cold weather leads to extra deaths and taking measures to stay warm and work with others, can make a life-changing difference.”

So how can you stay safe this winter?

The ideal indoor temperature is 18-21°C (65-75°F) so if you are feeling a bit nippy then check your thermostat.

If trying to save fuel, it is advisable to heat the living room during the day, the bathroom when needed and the bedroom, just before going to bed.

Have your heating and cooking appliances checked regularly and make sure the chimney has been swept recently?

Order repeat prescriptions in good time to make sure you have enough supply of any medicines you use.

Having a family member, friend or neighbour to help out with anything from putting the bin out to collecting prescriptions or doing shopping.

Have your flu vaccine to protect yourself and others (this is free for anyone over 65, pregnant women, those with long term conditions, and children aged two to four – contact your GP to make an appointment.

Make sure warm clothes are within reach – keep jumpers and thick socks close by. Wear several thin layers, rather than one thick one.

And last but not least...drink regular cups of tea, or other hot drinks, and regular hot meals can help your body stay warm.

If you have to go outside you are advised to wear layers of warm clothing and shoes with slip resistant, good grip soles

Make sure you keep a regular eye on the weather forecast, don’t get caught out in a snowstorm or on icy roads.

More information is available about how to keep yourself and others safe during cold weather through www.kent.gov.uk/winterhealth