This time of year, winter storms are very common. A major winter storm can be lethal. Preparing for cold weather conditions and responding to them effectively can reduce the dangers caused by winter storms.
When listening to weather reports during the winter season, know the terminology. A winter storm watch indicates that severe winter weather may affect your area. A winter storm warning indicates that severe winter weather conditions are occurring or definitely on the way. A blizzard warning means that winds of 35 mph or more with snow and blowing snow reducing visibility to less than one-quarter mile for three hours or more is likely.
If weather reports indicate that a winter storm is likely, prepare your home. Make sure that you have extra food and water on hand in case you are unable to get out and get supplies. You should also make sure that you have plenty of fuel on hand for generators and fireplaces in case the electricity goes out and you need to keep warm. Keep in mind that stores can become very busy when people know that a storm is on its way, so it is best to keep these supplies on hand well before a storm.
If you are going to be outdoors during the winter season, wear loose-fitting, layered, light-weight clothing. This will keep you warmer than wearing a single heavier layer. Layers can be removed to prevent perspiration and chill. Outer garments should be tightly woven and water repellant. Wear mittens rather than gloves as mittens are warmer because fingers retain more warmth when they touch each other. Make sure that you have extra winter clothing, including boots, in your car at all times during the winter in case you become stranded.
Winter weather is a part of life in Colorado. Being prepared before severe winter weather hits will make you more comfortable, and keep you safe, during the storm.