Wild mix of weather on the way

February 20, 2014 by  
Filed under Wind Energy Tips

A wintery mix of freezing rain, sleet and snow is in the forecast for Thursday morning, with ice accumulations of a coating upwards to a quarter of an inch.

Rain with locally dense fog is expected Thursday afternoon.

We have a chance of thunderstorms Thursday evening, with wind gusts up to 50 mph.

Snow squalls and blustery winds of 25-45 mph are expected Friday.

Impacts:

* Poor driving conditions with a wintery mix developing during the morning rush hour Thursday. Many secondary and country back roads will become treacherous.

* Ponding of water on many roads and low-lying areas with snow and ice-clogged drains.

* Wind gusts are likely to result in scattered power outages as a result of falling branches.

* Weather preparedness information is available online at www.ready.gov/winter.

The forecast for the Grand Haven area:

Thursday: Rain, possibly mixed with snow, freezing rain and sleet before 7 am; then rain, snow and sleet between 7 and 10 am; then rain after 10 am. Patchy fog after 1 pm. High near 46. Breezy, with an east wind 10 to 15 mph increasing to 16 to 21 mph in the afternoon. Winds could gust as high as 29 mph. Chance of precipitation is 100%. New ice accumulation of less than a 0.1 of an inch possible. New snow and sleet accumulation of less than a half-inch possible.

Thursday night: Rain before 10 pm, then snow. Low around 27. Windy, with an east-southeast wind 20 to 25 mph becoming southwest 29 to 34 mph after midnight. Winds could gust as high as 47 mph. Chance of precipitation is 80%. New snow accumulation of less than a half-inch possible.

Friday: A 40 percent chance of snow showers before 1 pm. Cloudy, then gradually becoming mostly sunny, with a high near 31. Windy, with a west-southwest wind 30 to 33 mph, with gusts as high as 55 mph.

Friday night: A 20 percent chance of snow showers after 1 am. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 19. Breezy, with a west-southwest wind 19 to 24 mph decreasing to 9 to 14 mph after midnight. Winds could gust as high as 34 mph.

Consumers Energy offers tips for preparing for power outages before, during and after storms strike.

Consumers Energy officials say they are monitoring the weather and preparing for possible power outages. Local service centers are staffed, and additional company and contractor crews are on standby to quickly respond to any power outages and downed power lines caused by the expected stormy weather.

“Today’s sunny and relatively warm conditions are just a brief respite from this tough winter,” Mary Palkovich, vice president of energy delivery for the utility, said Wednesday afternoon. “We are keeping a close eye on the weather, making our preparations and will be ready for what Mother Nature brings us. While we do not anticipate this weather event to be the magnitude of the recent December ice storm, we’re committed to doing everything we can to deliver safe, reliable energy service to our customers when severe weather hits.”

Some important tips to help prepare for a storm include:

·         Charge electronic devices such as cell phones and laptop and tablet computers, and have fresh batteries available for items such as flashlights and weather radios. 

·         Have a three-day supply of water and non-perishable food available, and don’t forget a first aid kit or any prescription medication if needed.  

·         During and after a storm, people are advised to stay at least 25 feet from any downed lines and assume that every line is “live” and dangerous. Residents are also reminded to not touch anything a power line may be touching, including trees, fences, other debris and puddles.

·         Report any downed wires by calling 911 or your electricity provider.

Additional storm and power outage information is available at Consumers Energy’s online outage center, www.ConsumersEnergy.com/outage

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