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What Is A Winter Weather Advisory?

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Winter Weather Advisories are common, but not always understood.

As winter weather socks much of the nation this week, the warning, watches, and advisories are flying fast and furious. It is usually hard enough to differentiate between watches and warnings, but winter weather is the one natural occurrence that gets its own categorization, the advisory. Let us take a look at exactly what this term means and how it is applied in order to prevent water damage as a result.

Winter Weather Advisories are issued by the National Weather Service any time there is a low pressure system producing a combination of winter weather such as snow, freezing rain, sleet, or ice, that can b present a danger, ye does not rise to the level of the Winter Weather Warning. The closest association would be the Significant Weather Advisory, but the Winter Weather version is an official declaration.  Canadian Meteorological services has a similar issue.

The criteria for an advisory will vary from area to area. In Florida, advisories are issued upon the sighting of any snowfall, whereas it will take upwards of 5 inches of snow in New England before the advisory is released. If there are other forms of winter weather expected, then Advisories or Storm Warnings can be issued, and are dependent on the level and amount of precipitation expected as a result.

Winter Weather Advisories are recent additions, since prior to 2009 there were Snow and Sleet Advisories, specific for those instances appropo to the advisory. There were similar advisories in effect for Blowing Snow, as well as combinations of the three. All were eventually replaced by the all encompassing Winter Weather Advisory.

In any case, whenever a Winter Weather Advisory is issued, the time is right to begin making preparations, making sure that you have warm clothes, a space heater with extra fuel, non perishable food, bottled water, as well as the flashlight and radio with additional batteries.

Winter weather is never something to take lightly, since the cold and ice does not forgive many mistakes. Pay close attention to local and regional weather forecasts in order to keep current on rapidly changing weather conditions.  Doing so will allow you to remain one step ahead of the problem and protect your family against dangers posed by exposure to the elements.

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