Winter Weather Preparedness

What do I need to know about winter weather?

Freezing Rain creates a coating of ice on roads and walkways.

Sleet is rain that turns to ice pellets before reaching the ground. Sleet also causes roads to freeze and become slippery.

Winter Weather: Advisory, Watch, and Warning

A winter weather advisory means cold, ice and snow are expected.

A winter storm watch means severe weather such as heavy snow or ice is possible in the next day or two.

A winter storm warning means severe winter conditions have begun or will begin very soon.

How can I stay safe during a winter weather event?

  • Prepare your car before the storm hits. Check the anti-freeze protection and fill the fuel tank. On icy roads, drive slowly and carefully; increase following distance 3 times normal. Use tire chains when ice covers the roads. Do not let air out of your tires; reduced inflation tires do not have better traction. Keep a blanket in the car.
  • Plan ahead of the storm. During the winter months, stock up on non-perishable foods that may be served without refrigeration or heating, in case the power goes out. Make sure that you have at least 10 to 14 additional days worth of medication.
  • Make sure your home is well insulated and that you have weather stripping around your doors and windowsills to keep the warm air inside.
  • Insulate pipes with insulation or newspapers and plastic and allow faucets to drip a little during cold weather to avoid freezing.
  • Stay indoors during the storm. If you must go outside, several layers of lightweight clothing will keep you warmer than a single heavy coat.