by Ann Harrison
In the last few days, several states along the East Coast have been pounded by major snow storms. With that being said, here are some helpful tips for keeping you and your family safe during a snowstorm.
Pay Close Attention to Weather Alerts
It is important to stay tuned to alerts that have been issued by the National Weather Service, in order to be prepared for all types of weather, but especially snowstorms that may occur during the winter. It is important to understand what advisories, watches, and warnings mean when they appear on your television screen, over commercial radio stations, weather radio, weather apps for smart phones and tablets, and Internet sources such as weather.gov and the weather channel.
Here is a breakdown of these alerts, and what they mean:
A winter storm outlook means that winter weather has been predicted by the National Weather Service (NWS), over the next two to five days.
A winter weather advisory means that significant winter weather conditions may make driving hazardous, and may be an inconvenience, but they are not expected to be harmful or life threatening.
A winter storm watch means that an ice or snowstorm is expected within the next 36 to 48 hours. People in the watch area should make sure they have a survival plan in place, and review this plan in the event of a major snowstorm.
A winter storm warning means that either a winter storm has begun in your area, or one is expected within the next 24 hours or less. If you are in the warned area, it is important to take the following necessary precautions to ensure your safety during a major snowstorm or blizzard.
Don’t Leave Home, Unless Absolutely Necessary
During a major snowstorm or blizzard, driving conditions may become hazardous, visibility is very limited, if there is any at all, and many roads are closed, because they have become impassible in the snow. In the event of a snowstorm, many meteorologists advise that people stay at home if at all possible. Stay tuned to various media outlets and government web sites, so you can be prepared for a winter storm, before it occurs. You may be able to drive or take public transit to work or school, but the rapid change in the weather conditions may make it difficult for you to return home safely.
One Final Survival Tip
Last, but certainly not least, be sure to stock up on food, water, and any prescription and over the counter medicines you or your family members take on a regular basis. Although the lines at the supermarkets may seem long and impossible to get through, you may not be able to get to a store in a snowstorm, so making sure that you have enough food, water, and medication to last for a few days is essential for your survival.
For more information about these and other safety tips for weathering a snowstorm, please visit http://www.everydayhealth.com/healthy-living/ways-to-stay-safe-in-a-blizzard-4437.aspx and http://www.redcross.org/prepare/disaster/winter-storm.
About the Author
Ann Harrison is a totally blind author, who grew up in the small town of Rochelle, Georgia, and has moved back to her family home after living in North Georgia for several years. Ann has written many articles of general interest for a number of clients since June of 2010, including the Cordele Dispatch. She has also published a short story entitled “The Big Climb” in Awethology Light. Ann also published a story entitled “The Woods” in December Awethology Light Volume by The #Awethors. She is currently working on several novels, and a self-help book. To read more of Ms. Harrison’s inspirational writings, visit her blog at www.wwannwrites.wordpress.com