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Winter Weather Alerts

2/5/2021 (Permalink)

Now that we are in the midst of winter, it is always good to know winter weather terminology to be prepared. You never know what Michigan winters will bring, so it is important to know the following terms:

Winter Weather Advisory

This product is issued by the National Weather Service when a low pressure system produces a combination of winter weather (snow, freezing rain, sleet, etc.) that present a hazard, but does not meet warning criteria.

Winter Storm Watch

This product is issued by the National Weather Service when there is a potential for heavy snow or significant ice accumulations, usually at least 24 to 36 hours in advance. The criteria for this watch can vary from place to place.

Winter Storm Warning

This product is issued by the National Weather Service when a winter storm is producing or is forecast to produce heavy snow or significant ice accumulations. The criteria for this warning can vary from place to place.

Blowing Snow Advisory

Issued when wind driven snow reduces surface visibility, possibly, hampering traveling. Blowing snow may be falling snow, or snow that has already accumulated but is picked up and blown by strong winds.

Blizzard Warning

Sustained winds or frequent gusts to 35 miles per hour or greater and considerable amounts of falling or blowing snow (reducing visibility to less than a quarter mile) are expected to prevail for a period of three hours or longer.

Freezing Rain

Advisory Issued when freezing rain or freezing drizzle is forecast but a significant accumulation is not expected. However, even small amounts of freezing rain or freezing drizzle may cause significant travel problems.

Ice Storm Warning

This product is issued by the National Weather Service when freezing rain produces a significant and possibly damaging accumulation of ice. The criteria for this warning varies from state to state, but typically will be issued any time more than 1/4" of ice is expected to accumulate in an area.

Snow Advisory

This product is issued by the National Weather Service when a low pressure system produces snow that may cause significant inconveniences, but do not meet warning criteria and if caution is not exercised could lead to life threatening situations. The advisory criteria varies from area to area. If the forecaster feels that it is warranted, he or she can issue it for amounts less than the minimum criteria. For example, it may be issued for the first snow of the season or when snow has not fallen in long while.

Heavy Snow Warning

Issued by the National Weather Service when snowfall of 6 inches (15 cm) or more in 12 hours or 8 inches (20 cm) or more in 24 hours is imminent or occurring. These criteria are specific for the Midwest and may vary regionally.

Frost Advisory

Issued during the growing season when widespread frost formation is expected over an extensive area. Surface temperatures are usually in the mid 30s Fahrenheit.

Frost/Freeze Warning

Below freezing temperatures are expected.

Cold weather, snow, and ice storms can cause severe damage to your home or business. When these types of disasters strike, immediate action is necessary to prevent additional damage to your property. If you suffer from winter storm damage, don't hesitate to call us! We are here to help 24/7.

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