Archive for Thursday, March 26, 2009

Winter storm watch issued for weekend

March 26, 2009

The National Weather Service has issued a winter storm watch for the region, including Johnson, Wyandotte and Leavenworth counties.

The watch will be in effect from late Friday night through Saturday evening.

Beginning Friday night, rain is expected to transition to freezing rain and sleet, then to heavy snow by early Saturday.

The weather service said expected snowfall amounts may vary widely across the watch area. But between four and eight inches of snow are possible by Saturday afternoon.

The storm that will affect the area is part of a much larger system that forecasters say will move through the state starting Thursday afternoon. It’s possible that up to a foot of snow could accumulate in western Kansas.

The Kansas Division of Emergency Management is urging Kansans to prepare for these dangerous weather conditions.

“It is absolutely critical to have an emergency kit in your home that allows you to stay safe during power outages,” said Maj. Gen. Tod Bunting, director of KDEM and Kansas adjutant general. “This needs to include bottled water, non-perishable food, medications, blankets and flashlights.”

“If you plan to travel over the next several days, make sure you have an emergency kit with you and plenty of gas in your vehicle’s gas tank in case you become stranded or delayed,” Bunting said. “If possible, change your travel plans to avoid the storm.”

Kansans may monitor road conditions by calling 511 or visiting their Web site. If outside the state, call 866-511-5368 to get local road conditions.

Here are some items to include in a home emergency supply kit:

• Water: One gallon of water per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation.

• Food: At least a three-day supply of non-perishable food for each person.

• Battery-powered or hand-crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert and extra batteries for both.

• Flashlight and extra batteries.

• First-aid kit.

• Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation.

• Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities.

• Can opener for food (if kit contains canned food).

• Local maps.

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