Some of the most commonly used winter weather terms are listed and explained below.
- Outlook: is used to indicate a hazardous weather event may develop within the next 3-5 days.
- Watch: means hazardous winter weather risks can happen within the next 12-48 hours.
- Warning/Advisory: are issued when hazardous winter weather is imminent, a high probability or is occurring.
- Warning: is used for events that could directly cause death, injury or significant property damage.
- Advisory: is used for lesser events that can cause an inconvenience but not death or injury or significant property damage.
- Statement: National Weather Service (NWS) frequently issues updates to watches, warnings or advisories.
- Frostbite: occurs when the skin becomes cold enough to freeze. Warning signs are loss of feeling, a white or pale appearance in the fingers, toes, ear lobes or nose.
- Hypothermia: is low body temperature during long periods of cold exposure. Warning signs are disorientation, confusion, uncontrollable shivering, drowsiness and apparent exhaustion. In severe cases, death is possible.
Safety Tips to Travel
Citizens should winterize their cars. The following items should be checked: ignition, cooling, fuel and exhaust systems, battery, lights, tires, heater, brakes, wipers, defroster and oil. In the winter, it is advisable to keep the fuel tank full. Know safe driving routes from home, school or work.
A survival kit in the car should include a flashlight, ice scraper, paper towels, extra clothes, blankets, matches and candles, booster cables, a compass, maps, sand, chains and high calorie non-perishable food.
Drive defensively! Check your owner?s manual for information about how to use your vehicle?s braking system during hazardous winter driving conditions.
Travel smart! Plan your trip, don?t drive alone and let someone know your travel plans, route and estimated arrival time.
Drive carefully! If you get tired or storm intensity increases, seek shelter off the road. Use road maps, seat covers and newspapers to help provide additional insulation if you are trapped inside your car in a winter snowstorm.
Do not leave your car unless you see a building close by where you know you can take shelter. Once a storm is over, you may need to leave the car to get help. Follow the road if possible. If you need to walk across open county, orient your route toward distant landmarks to maintain your sense of direction.
Safety Tips for the Home
- Keep extra batteries for ra...