November is Winter Weather Preparedness Month in Illinois

IEMA, National Weather Service, Local EMAs Encourage People to Prepare for Winter Weather

SPRINGFIELD – The winter of 2013-14 is one Illinois residents won’t soon forget. According to the National Weather Service (NWS), the frigid temperatures and snowy weather experienced statewide made for the worst winter conditions in nearly 40 years. Chicago recorded the coldest December through March in its history, and temperatures statewide were the fourth coldest on record.
 
To help Illinois residents be prepared for winter weather this year, the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) the NWS  and local emergency management agencies are encouraging people to begin preparing now for extreme cold, snow and ice. The organizations will highlight winter weather preparedness throughout November as part of their annual winter weather preparedness campaign.
 
“We all hope the winter of 2014-15 isn’t a repeat of last winter,” said IEMA Director Jonathon Monken. “But hope isn’t a plan. Winter weather in Illinois may be inevitable, but being prepared will help you handle whatever weather hazards Mother Nature throws our way this year.”
 
Monken said severe winter weather isn’t just inconvenient, it can be deadly. During the winter of 2013-14, 28 people died from exposure to extreme cold, the most in more than 25 years.
 
"The extreme, record-setting weather conditions in much of Illinois this past winter illustrated the importance of being prepared for snow, ice and cold temperatures" said Chris Miller, warning coordination meteorologist with the NWS office in Lincoln. "It is much easier, and less costly, to prepare your vehicle and home for winter conditions now, rather than waiting until winter is upon us." 
 
IEMA, the NWS and the American Red Cross developed a winter weather preparedness guide that covers winter weather terms and tips for staying safe at home, in the car and at school. The guide is available on the Ready Illinois website at www.Ready.Illinois.gov or by calling 217-785-9925.