Prep now for dangerous cold that will invade Mississippi later this week

Published 11:32 am Monday, December 19, 2022

By Magnolia State Live

Mississippians never know what to expect for Christmas weather. Sometimes, families gather to play outside wearing shorts and t-shirts. Other times, a nice sweater is perfect for Christmas church services. This year will be different.

Many will agree a chilly holiday is a great surprise, but the forecast for Christmas next weekend is dangerous, especially for people not prepared. Add to the danger of extreme windchills the possibility of black ice from wet spots on roads, the time is now to prepare.

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There are three things to prep the next couple of days: People, pets, and property.

The National Weather Service offers the following tips:
– Check the forecast at or your favorite weather app, station, etc.: Make checking the forecast part of your regular routine so you’ll know when to expect cold weather.
– Adjust Your Schedule: If possible, adjust your schedule to avoid being outside during the coldest part of the day, typically the early morning. Try to find a warm spot for your children while waiting for the school bus outside.
– Protect Your Pets, Livestock and other Property: If you have pets or farm animals, make sure they have plenty of food and water, and are not overly exposed to extreme cold. Take precautions to ensure your water pipes do not freeze. Know the temperature thresholds of your plants and crops.
– Fill up the tank: Make sure your car or vehicle has at least a half a tank of gas during extreme cold situations so that you can stay warm if you become stranded.
– Dress for the outdoors even if you don’t think you’ll be out much.
– Update Your Winter Car Survival Kit: Make sure your car survival kit has the following:
– Jumper cables: flares or reflective triangle are great extras
– Flashlights: Replace the batteries before the winter season starts and pack some extras
– First Aid Kit: Also check your purse of bag for essential medications
– Baby, special needs gear: If you have a baby or family member with special needs, pack diapers and any special formula or food
– Food: Stock non-perishable food such as canned food and a can opener, dry cereal and protein rich foods like nuts and energy bars
– Water: Have at least 1 gallon of water per person a day for at least 3 days
– Basic toolkit: Pliers, wrench, screwdriver
– Pet supplies: Food and water
– Radio: Battery or hand cranked
– Cat litter or sand: For better tire traction
– Ice scraper: Even if you usually park in a garage, have one in the car.
– Clothes: Make sure you dress for the weather in warm clothes, gloves, hat, sturdy boots, jacket and an extra change of clothes for the cold
– Warmers: Pack extra for body, hands, feet
– Blankets or sleeping bags: If you get stranded in traffic on a lonely road, you’ll be glad to have it.
– Charged Cell Phone: Keep a spare charger in your car as well.