Dear Southern Florida, The rest of the United States hates you just a little right now. While Miami’s expected forecast is partly cloudy, mostly dry with highs in the lower 80s, the rest of us are experiencing below freezing temperatures, snow, ice and sleet.
A NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) severe winter weather alert states much of the South and Southeast United States is under a winter weather warning. Remember, a warning means the weather event is already happening or will happen in the near future and residents should prepare now for bad weather. Through the rest of the week, a winter storm is blowing through most of the United States including the Northwest, Great Lakes and moving to the Eastern Seaboard, affecting the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast, as well. Forecasters are predicting freezing rain and heavy snowfall for the Pacific Northwest and the Northern Rockies. Mother Nature is letting us know winter is not over yet. Citizens in Atlanta, Georgia can attest to that. On Wednesday, January 29, a freak winter storm dumped a little over 3 inches of snow and ice on the city, essentially shutting it down. Children spent the night in schools, highways became parking lots as people abandoned their vehicles for alternative shelter and the National Guard had to fly in food and water to stranded motorists. Instead of relying on a government that might not be able to rescue you, be as prepared as you can for the following weeks as severe winter weather still befalls us.
1. 10 Safety Rules for Spending a Night in Your Car
Until help arrives, you will need to focus on staying safe, hydrated and warm. Pull your emergency vehicle kit out of the trunk or back seat and follow these 10 rules.
2. Build an Emergency Kit for Your Car
If you are stuck, run the heater in your car for only 10 minutes every hour to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning with a window cracked. Stay inside your car as much as possible. Do not get out and walk, especially in whiteout conditions. Keep your interior light on so rescue workers can see you. In addition, these items are essential for your winter weather emergency vehicle kit.
3. 15 Tips for Driving in Snow and Ice
Driving in snow and ice is treacherous. As a rule of thumb, if you can avoid going out—you should. Snow and ice can hit at any time; none of us wants to be stuck at work any longer than we have to, so when driving in severe winter weather is unavoidable, follow these top 15 safety tips for driving in snow and ice.
4. What to do if you Run Off the Road
When roads are slick, it is highly probable you can run right off the road. Depending on how steep of an embankment or ditch you end up in, you might be able to get yourself out. Before attempting to get your car back on the road, call for help. In an extreme circumstance, you can try to get your car back on the road by following these 10 tips.
5. How to Prepare for an Ice Storm
Since road travel can be extremely treacherous during severe winter storms, it is best to prepare and stock up now before old man winter hits. Preparing for a power outage in winter is much like preparing for a power outage in spring or summer. However, deaths related to weather increase in winter, so you need to take extra precaution in preparing to make sure you stay warm and safe during an ice storm.