It’s Now “Officially” Winter
Posted at 9 a.m.
Today, Sunday, Dec. 21, marks the winter solstice and begins the first official day of winter. And because of this — coupled with the slight chance of snow in the forecast for this weekend — we wanted to share some snow tips to take before snow or ice arrives that will make your life a little easier.
We’re not suggesting you have to run out to the grocery store this weekend and stock up on supplies (like the squirrel above), but we do encourage you to maintain an emergency supply kit at home, work and in your vehicle and replenish it regularly so you are prepared in case of a major snow storm.
Now we do realize that these aren’t emergency-related tips, but we hope that they are something you might not have heard of before and that will ease your frustration when dealing with an ice covered car or truck.
While these tips are designed to help you get in and out of your vehicle easier — think less scraping and defrosting — and get moving more quickly, we do encourage you to be aware of road conditions whenever you are out and about on the county’s roadways.
The most important safety tip is to get where you need to be before the weather gets bad. If we can minimize traffic on roads it’ll help VDOT snow plows clear the roads quicker while also giving public safety responders an easier path while responding to emergencies.
The National Weather Service reports that death or serious injury is more likely to occur as a result of traffic accidents than the direct impact of the storm itself.
After the Snow
If you must go outside after a snow fall (or during), be careful on walkways and roads, which can be dangerous despite appearances. Also, travel in the day if you can when visibility is better and stay on main roads (avoid back road shortcuts) that have priority for snow plowing.
Our emergency management office has lots of information and guidance on how to prepare for a winter storm. And make signing up for weather alerts from Fairfax Alerts part of your winter weather readiness efforts. You can sign up right now — it’ll only take a couple of minutes.