The meteorological start to winter is Dec. 1. We got an early taste of Jack Frost with our unseasonal ice storm earlier this month.

According to the winter forecast in the Farmers’ Almanac, “Mother Nature will mix intervals of tranquil weather with occasional shots of cold and wintry precipitation but overall may seem to be a bit ‘temperamental.’”

Sounds ominous. It’s not too soon to start thinking about winter weather preparedness.

The Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management recommends the following:

• Develop a family disaster plan for winter storms. Discuss with your family what to do if a winter storm watch or warning is issued. Everyone should know what to do in case all family members are not together when a winter storm hits.

• Understand the hazards of wind chill. A strong wind combined with a temperature of just below freezing can have the same effect as a still air temperature of 35 degrees or colder.

• Check on family, friends and neighbors, especially the elderly. Make sure they are prepared.

• Don’t forget about the pets. Make sure they have good food and water supplies and a place to seek shelter.

• Have your car winterized by checking antifreeze, washer blades, tire pressure, etc.

Depend on a reliable weather information source for the latest weather information. Our website reports updates from the National Weather Service and Enid/Garfield County Emergency Management.

Be notified when severe weather strikes by signing up for the News & Eagle’s text alerts. Severe weather alerts are issued by the National Weather Service by county. Sign up online at alerts.

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