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January 5, 2014

OUR VIEW: A dangerous week of weather

There are times when Mother Nature must be taken seriously. This is one of those times.

Yes we must be diligent drivers when we get the type of snowfalls we saw over the new year holiday, and yes we must be careful not to break ourselves while shoveling up the mess left behind. But that’s nothing compared to what we’re in store for this week.

If the weather behaves even close to what forecasters are predicting for early this week, we’re in for some seriously dangerous weather. The kind of weather that can come with major consequences.

They are predicting snowfall between 6 and 12 inches in the Logansport area by this evening. For good measure, Mother Nature is throwing in gusting winds today that will cause blowing and drifting snow and even a chance for white-out conditions.

Both are reasons to take note, but it’s the falling temperatures that will be the real danger. As winds increase and colder air arrives early, wind chills are expected to quickly drop below zero this afternoon and into this evening. By Tuesday, the mercury will fall to 10 to 20 degrees below zero and the winds will push it even lower — down to 30 to 45 degrees below zero.

Those are dangerous numbers, and as such, precautions must be taken.

• If you must venture out, layered lightweight clothing will keep you warmer than a single heavy coat. Gloves or mittens and a hat will help you to avoid losing body heat.

• Wear waterproof, insulated boots to keep your feet warm and dry and to maintain your footing in ice and snow.

• If you shovel snow, don’t get carried away. Take frequent breaks and stay hydrated.

• Prevent frozen pipes by opening cabinet doors to let warm air circulate. Let the cold water drip from the faucet to keep pipes from freezing.

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