Heavy snowfall and extreme cold can immobilize an entire region. Even areas which normally experience mild winters can be hit with a major snow storm or extreme cold. The results can range from isolation due to blocked roads and downed power lines to the havoc of icy roadways to the dangers of hypothermia and frostbite. It is important to know the terms used to describe winter storm conditions.
Freezing rain - Rain that freezes when it hits the ground, creating a coating of ice on roadways.
Frost/Freeze Warning - Below freezing temperatures are expected.
Sleet - Rain that turns to ice pellets before reaching the ground. Sleet also causes roads to freeze and become slippery.
Winter Storm Warning - Severe winter weather has begun or is about to begin.
Blizzard Warning - Heavy snow and strong winds will produce a blinding snow, near zero visibility, deep drifts, and life-threatening wind chill.
Winter Storm Watch - Severe winter weather such as heavy snow or ice is possible within the next day or two.
Winter Weather Advisory - Cold, ice, and snow are expected within the next few days.