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Be safe and warm this next week


All of the schools in our reading area were cancelled due to inclement weather Tuesday. The forecast calls for more freezing precipitation in the upcoming week. The National Weather Service wants to remind everyone to be safe and remember these helpful tips when the cold weather arrives.

"It's important for people to stay up to date with the forecast and to monitor the changing weather conditions," said Kelsey Angle, Meteorologist in Charge with the National Weather Service Station in Springfield. "We are expecting a major winter storm to make its way through the plains towards the Ohio valley. With that we will see some widespread accumulating snow across the area."

Thanks to modern technology, there are multiple ways to check the weather and get alerts, including storm sirens, NOAA weather radio, local TV stations, signing up for weather alerts on your phone, or checking the local TV and National Weather Service social media.

"Those individuals that are going to be traveling, it is important that they stay up-to-date on the most current weather conditions," said Angle. "It's also essential to have an emergency supply kit."

Before traveling, consider putting some of the following items in an emergency kit:

Mobile phone charger or power batteries

Flashlight with extra batteries

First-aid kit

Additional clothing to keep dry

Sack of sand or cat litter for traction


Windshield scraper and brush

Tool kit

Tow rope

Battery booster cables

Compass and road maps- don't depend on mobile devices with limited battery life.

"It is important that people give themselves plenty of extra time if travel can't be postponed," said Angle. "It is also important that people dress for the expected conditions."

To check road conditions, visit the Missouri Department of Transportation's Traveler's Map website at www.traveler.modot.org/map/index.html or download the MoDOT Traveler Information application, which is available on Android and Apple devices.

Warm clothing to consider includes:


Shoes or boots that are waterproof

Long pants, possibly two or more layers, depending on how cold

Long sleeve shirts, maybe two or more layers spending on the weather

An insulated coat

A scarf or face mask

A reminder that if you find yourself stranded and without a working heat source, seek shelter as soon as possible. Many counties in Missouri have warming centers, but these places may only sometimes be open or run on limited hours.

In Webster County, the current warming centers are:

Marshfield Senior Center at 228 North Crittenden, Marshfield, 417-859-3555

Seymour Community Library at 320 East Clinton Avenue, Seymour, 417-935-4193

Seymour Senior Center at 205 S Commercial St, Seymour, 417-935-2211

For a complete list of warming centers in Missouri, visit the website: https://tinyurl.com/y35f8z4r.

If readers find themselves at home, it's also essential to have a home emergency kit with a few things similar to the car kit: First-aid supplies, Mobile phone chargers or power battery banks, Flashlights with extra batteries, and extra blankets.

Other items to have in a home kit include:

Battery-powered NOAA Weather Radio or portable radio to receive emergency information.

Extra water and food such as dried fruit, nuts, granola bars, and other food that do not require cooking or refrigeration.

Extra prescription medicine.

If readers have infants in the home, ensure you have baby items such as diapers and formula.

Folks that have a generator make sure to have enough fuel and never have it running in an enclosed space. With it running outside, ensure your carbon monoxide detector works correctly and the outside vent is clear of leaves and debris. During or after the weather hits, make sure it is cleared of snow.

For readers with fireplaces, wood stoves, or space heaters, ensure it is adequately ventilated to prevent a fire. Home fires are common each winter when trying to stay warm. Make sure fire extinguishers and smoke alarms are working correctly. Test smoke alarms monthly to make sure they are performing. For those fireplaces, ensure a fireplace screen is heavy enough to stop rolling logs and big enough to cover the entire opening to catch flying sparks. Inspect and clean woodstove pipes and chimneys annually and check for damage or obstructions monthly, and before going to bed, ensure the fire is completely out.

Keep these tips in mind and be safe as the weather gets more and more colder.

For more information, visit the NWS website at www.weather.gov/sgf/ or check out their YouTube channel, NWS Springfield.


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