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Hazardous Weather Sat thru Wed

posted Jan 3, 2014, 1:16 PM by Brian Donahoe   [ updated Jan 3, 2014, 1:19 PM ]
1/3 - 1/7. Potentially dangerous winter weather is expected over Lake County and neighboring areas from this evening through the middle of next week. Winds are forecast to increase this afternoon and evening, leading to blowing snow and reduced visibility tonight and early Saturday. Some snow is possible on Saturday and Sunday, with bitter cold air moving in Sunday, leading to record or near-record lows and several days of continuous below-zero temperatures.

Forecast - Today through Saturday
The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Weather Advisory for blowing/drifting snow until 9 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 4. Winds from the south-southwest are forecast to increase through the afternoon and evening to around 25 mph, with gusts to near 40 mph possible. Combined with the light, fluffy snow, these strong winds may lead to blizzard-like conditions tonight, particularly in open or more-rural areas. Some snow is possible Saturday afternoon through Sunday, with a few inches of accumulation expected in some areas.

Forecast -Sunday through Wednesday
Strong northwest winds will bring brutally cold air to the region during the day Sunday, with Sunday's high temperature in the teens expected to happen before sunrise and the temperature falling to around zero by sunset. Some scattered light snow is possible through Sunday evening. The actual temperature is forecast to fall to around 15 below zero by Monday morning, with extremely dangerous windchills of 40 below zero or colder. Temperatures are not forecast to rise above zero until mid-day on Wednesday, when winds shift to be from the west and southwest. Some snow is also possible on Wednesday.

Impacts and Preparedness
Travel may be hazardous this evening and early Saturday morning, with white-out conditions possible, particularly along east-west roads in open areas.
* If you must travel tonight, allow extra time to reach your destination safely.
* Avoid time outdoors from Sunday through Wednesday, particularly children and the elderly, who are more at-risk for cold injuries. Frostbite can occur in less than ten minutes with conditions such as those forecast for Monday and Tuesday.
* Be aware of the possibility of damage to vehicles from extreme cold, and if you are unsure, protect the engine by having the coolant checked to make sure it will protect your vehicle in sub-zero temperatures.
* If there have previously been problems with frozen water pipes in your home or business, take action before the cold arrives to protect those pipes with extra insulation or safe heat sources. Never attempt to thaw a frozen water line with a blow torch, because this practice leads to many structure fires.
* Everyone should monitor this dangerous evolving weather situation, and take action to protect their property and their lives.

The National Weather Service provides the most-current weather information. Winter Weather preparedness information is also available from the Alert Lake County website.

source: Diana O'Kelly Jan 3, 2014 nwesletter