Getting ready for winter…

It’s obvious across much of Upper Michigan today that fall is turning wintry.   If you haven’t already winterized your vehicle, put together an emergency kit for your home, or stocked up on gloves and hats, now is the time!

To raise awareness about the potential dangers of the upcoming winter season, Governor Rick Snyder has declared November 3 – 9,  as Winter Hazards Awareness Week in Michigan.
During Winter Hazards Awareness Week, Michigan residents are encouraged to learn about the dangers associated with cold, snow and ice and how to stay safe during the winter season.

From a statistical standpoint, according to the National Weather Service office in Marquette, temperatures averaged above normal with near normal snowfall. 

Matt Zika, NWS Warning Coordination Meteorologist, says last winter started out very mild and without much snow.  However, by the middle of January, the weather pattern flipped.  The second half of winter was dominated by cold and snowy conditions. A large majority of the seasonal snowfall was compressed into the second half of the winter.  With below normal temperatures that lasted well into the spring, many perceived the winter of 2012/2013 as a cold and snowy one especially compared to the last few years. 

Preparing means paying special attention with some easy steps now to ready  your vehicle for the winter.  That includes adding the proper windshield washer fluid and coolant; having good tires and a strong battery and adding  a survival kit to your car.  Winter safety also is important to consider because of the extreme temperatures.  Wearing a warm coat, hat, gloves and boots is important. At home, it’s vital to be aware of potential fire and carbon monoxide hazards from alternate heat sources such as a fireplaces, wood stoves or space heaters. 

For more information on how to prepare for the upcoming winter season, visit the National Weather Service Marquette website at