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Winter Weather Safety Week

Winter Weather Safety Week

It’s Winter Weather Safety and Preparedness Week in Illinois and Indiana, while Kentucky will observe the special week in December.

While this week’s weather has not been conducive to thinking about winter weather, it’s just around the corner and the National Weather Service has offered some advice to help area residents be prepared for the worst.

The NWS says wind chills are something to always be aware of as severe wind chills can lead to frost bite and hypothermia. Wind chills use wind speed and air temperature to determine heat loss from exposed skin. Wind chill advisories are issued when the observed temps and wind make it feel like minus 10 to minus 25 degrees. Wind Chill warnings are issued when the temperatures and winds make if feel like it is less than minus 25 degrees.

Local residents are reminded pets and livestock are also affected by windchills. One should leave plenty of water and shelter (if available for livestock) and bring cats and dogs into the house or a warm location. Salt and chemicals use to melt ice will also irritate an animal’s paws which should be cleaned as necessary. And don’t forget small animals may be hiding in your vehicle’s engine compartment to escape the cold.

Winter drivers are reminded to check their vehicles including windshields, wipers, batteries, heaters, tire and brakes.

Winter vehicle accidents are generally caused by driving too fast for conditions, or braking too hard. Following too closely or distracted driving also attribute to winter vehicle crashes.

Remember; don’t use your cruise when road conditions are bad, increase distance between vehicles and use extra caution. If one becomes stranded on the road, officials urge you to stay with the vehicle and make sure the vehicle is visible to authorities or road crews.

These are just a few of the recommendations made by the National Weather Service, additional tips on winter weather are available online at the National Weather Service website.

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