Winter storms and blizzards can create difficult conditions. It is important to be safe at home or road. Follow the safety checklists and always listen to any weather radio or watch local news to get more information on any warnings or advisories within your area.
Winter Safety Checklist:
To protect themselves when blizzards or snowstorms are forecast, residents should have a checklist of things
Weather Forecast Checklist
- Have a Battery-powered radio (for listening to local emergency instructions) and have extra batteries.
- National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) weather radio receiver (for listening to National Weather Service broadcasts). Check out www.nws.noaa.gov/nwr for more information.
- Listen or watch for emergency broadcasts in radio or in local TV channels. Check for winter snowstorm or blizzard warnings and alert at weather.com
Home Safety Quick Checklist:
- Fill bathtubs with water in case pipes freeze.
- Make sure windows and doors are tightly closed and anything movable in the yard is tied down or brought inside. Bring in pets too!
- Be sure to stock up on food, refrigerated, or frozen.
- Have batteries for flashlights and radios.
- Keep emergency phone numbers handy
- Prescription drugs and other medicine.
- Have bottled water on hand.
Car Safety Checklist:
Before the winter season starts, automobiles should be checked out by a mechanic. This should be done to make sure that the components needed for winter driving are in proper working order. It is best to avoid travel if at all possible during these conditions.
- Check your car’s antifreeze and fluid levels.
- Keep your gas tank full just in case you are stalled or have a breakdown. You can run your car about ten minutes every hour to keep warm.
- Warm layered, light weight clothing should be worn if traveling during storm conditions to stay warm but to easily move as well.
- If necessary prefer traveling during daylight rather nighttime.
- Avoid traveling alone, have a family member or friend ride along during the trip.
- Jumper cables are must, it helps in case your battery dies.
- Extra clothes, blankets and shoes/boots are great to have if your own clothes get wet.
- Flashlight and extra batteries.
- Winter Car Emergency Kit
- How to Survive a Blizzard
- Tips to Save Energy and Money on Thermostat
- Blizzard Safety Tips from the Red Cross
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A blizzard is a heavy snowstorm with very cold temperatures, and high winds. Here is a list of top interesting facts about blizzards. Blizzards can kill people, cause traffic accidents, and bring cities to a halt.
Interesting Facts about Blizzards:
- A blizzard is a storm with winds of at least 35 mph and temperatures below 20°F, with enough falling or moving snow to reduce visibility to less than 1/4 mile.
- Blizzards only happen in cold front. Wind picks snow off the ground or when it falls down.
- Blizzards often cause severe damage to buildings and can bury structures under many feet of drift snow.
- The Saskatchewan blizzard of 1945 was the worst recorded in Canadian history.
- Rochester, New York is the snowiest large city in the U.S., averaging 94 inches of snow a year.
- About 187 inches (15.5 feet) of snow fell in seven days on Thompson Pass, Alaska in February, 1953. The greatest daily snow fall was 62 inches (over 5 feet) also on Thompson Pass, Alaska.
- Some of the most memorable blizzards in the U.S. have occurred on the East Coast, known as Nor’easters. The storms stall over the coast and last anywhere from 12 to 24 hours with snow amounts measured in feet rather than inches.
- 1888 has the distinction of being the year of two legendary storms. The Schoolhouse Blizzard struck the Plains States in January from Texas to South Dakota, stranding children in their one-room schoolhouses, hence the name.About 235 people died, most of them school-aged kids on their way home that never realized they had no chance of traversing the whiteout conditions, where the ground could not be differentiated from the sky.
- In the Great Blizzard of 1888, snowfalls of 40-50 inches fell in parts of NJ, NY, MA and CT and produced snowdrifts of more than 50 feet.Railroads were shut down and people were confined to their houses for up to a week. People tried to go to work for fear of losing their jobs, and almost 30 of them in New York alone froze to death on their way home after they found there was no electricity.
- If caught outside in a blizzard, it is not a good idea to eat snow because it will lower your body temperature. It’s best to melt the snow first.
Tip: Do you know about Top 10 Worst Blizzards in Chicago History?
Please read in 3rd worst snowstorm of Chicago : 2011
Other Facts about Blizzards:
The Midwestern U.S. and central Canada is often referred to as “blizzard country.” People in “blizzard country” have experienced the dangers and inconveniences of snowstorms.
They build houses with steep roofs so snow won’t pile up and farmers even purposely plant wheat in the fall. It is protected by the snow that covers the ground in the winter and is watered by the melting snow in the spring.
After a blizzard there is still the job of removing the snow. Snowplows are sent to work clearing the roads.
Sometimes the snow becomes rock-solid making the job nearly impossible unless strong, tough plows can be used or warmer temperatures soften the snow.
|Chicago Blizzard 2011||Tips to Save Energy and Money on Thermostat||Anniversary of the 1996 blizzard||10 Things To Do During A Blizzard|
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It’s Chicago Feb 1st, 2011(Tuesday) It’s the day I’ve witnessed the biggest Chicago blizzard. Its not only a big, but was reported as the 3rd worst snowstorms of Chicago History. It started around 2.30PM and continued till 12.00PM of February 2nd, 2011 (Wednesday) leaving around 20 inches of snow everywhere.
It climbed into Top Five On Chicago snowstorms List. Not only the snow by the blizzard, but Chicago also gets additional snow because of the ‘Lake Effect Snow‘. When it is developed it adds another 3 to 5 inches of snow. Chicago area residents were urged to stay indoors.
Lake Effect Snow: Lake effect snows occur when a mass of sufficiently cold air moves over a body of warmer water, creating an unstable temperature profile in the atmosphere.
As a result, clouds build over the lake and eventually develop into snow showers and squalls as they move downwind. The intensity of lake effect snow is increased when higher elevations downwind of the lake force the cold, snow-producing air to rise even further.
Top 10 worst snowstorms of Chicago:
( Order by inches of snow fall)
Here are the top 10 worst snowstorms of Chicago history, according to the National Weather Service:
1. 23.0 inches Jan 26-27, 1967
2. 21.6 inches Jan 1-3, 1999
3. 20.2 inches Feb. 1-2, 2011
4. 19.2 inches Mar 25-26, 1930
5. 18.8 inches Jan 13-14, 1979
6. 16.2 inches Mar 7-8, 1931
7. 15.0 inches Dec 17-20, 1929
8. 14.9 inches Jan 30, 1939
9. 14.9 inches Jan 6-7, 1918
10. 14.3 inches Mar 25-26, 1970
The Chicago Blizzard of 1967:
At 5:02 a.m. on this date, it began to snow. Nothing remarkable about that. It was January in Chicago, and, besides, 4 inches of snow had been predicted. But it kept snowing, all through this miserable Thursday and into early Friday morning, until it finally stopped at 10:10 a.m. By the end, 23 inches covered Chicago and the suburbs, the largest single snowfall in the city’s history.
Not only that, some memories were not as cheerful. Looting was rampant. Long lines formed at grocery stores, and shelves were emptied in moments. As a result of the record snow, 26 people died, including a 10-year-old girl who was accidentally caught in the cross-fire between police and looters and a minister who was run over by a snowplow. Several others died of heart attacks from shoveling snow.
The Chicago Blizzard of 1979:
In January of 1979, Chicago experienced one of its worst blizzards on record. The storm started on the night of Friday, January 12th and left 20 inches of snow over the weekend on top of a base of seven to ten inches. It closed O’Hare – the world’s busiest airport – for 46 hours.
The blizzard itself devastated areas from the Rockies to the Great Lakes and left at least 99 dead. In Iowa, National Guard helicopters brought in 75,000 pounds of hay to starving cattle. Similar efforts were made throughout the Midwest. In Chicago, roofs collapsed from the weight of the snow, and transportation was brought to a standstill for nearly a week. Garbage trucks were unable to run and the rats took advantage. The salt used to de-ice the roads caused motor failures on some of the trains. Abandoned cars slowed snow removal efforts. Buses were at least two hours behind schedule if they were running at all. After six days, only half of the runways at O’Hare were open for traffic.
The Chicago Blizzard of 1999:
On New Year’s weekend, the city was socked with a snowstorm that left 21.6 inches on the ground over its two-day wrath. On Saturday, Jan. 2, alone, it dumped 18.6 inches of snow on the ground –- the greatest single-day snowfall ever recorded in Chicago. Winds gusted at more than 60 mph, creating an eerie scene of shadows struggling through a cloud of whipping snow. Trees rocked, flags whipped, dumpsters were toppled, and those who dared to enter out were slapped and pelted in the face.
The Blizzard of Chicago – 2011:
O’Hare and Midway airports have canceled thousands of flights on February 2nd. At least a dozen people died — of exposure, or after shoveling or pushing stuck cars. The biggest mess was Lake Shore Drive, rendered impassable Tuesday evening by several accidents and sudden whiteout conditions. Hundreds of motorists were stranded for eight hours or more. Though it seems 20/20 hindsight to ask why the Drive wasn’t closed earlier, since, with traffic moving, there was no good reason to close it. The Chicago Fire Department rented 50 snowmobiles and placed at various stations across the city. It is believed to be the first time the city has used snowmobiles to help out during a massive snowfall.
Here you can watch the Chicago blizzard of 2011 photos:
Here you can watch the Chicago Blizzard of 2011 video
The safety tip to follow in extreme weather conditions: Stay Home, and Keep Warm 🙂
You may also like to Read :
- Winter Safety Checklist
- 10 Interesting Facts About Blizzards
- Preparing for the Storm – Emergency Preparedness
- National Weather Service
- Lake Shore Drive
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For anyone first snowfall is exciting moment as its beautiful around it is fun to watch the flurries all day long! It reminds me first snowfall poem by James Russell.
The snow had begun in the gloaming, And busily all the night Had been heaping field and highway With a silence deep and white. .... I stood and watched by the window The noiseless work of the sky, And the sudden flurries of snow-birds, Like brown leaves whirling by.
What a great Poem, These early poems are wonderful ,so pure,beauty in each word and phrase. The first snowfall is always a great excitement for anyone.
The First Snowfall – Video
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