Public Information Statement
Issued by NWS Caribou, ME

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Public Information Statement
National Weather Service Caribou ME
820 AM EDT Tue Oct 31 2017

The National Weather Service offices that serve New England have
declared October 30th through November 3rd, 2017, Winter Weather
Prepardness Week. The National Weather Service in Caribou will
feature a different educational topic each day during the
prepardness week.

Topic: Winter Weather Threats

Heavy Snow:

Heavy snow is the most frequent winter weather threat to Maine.
Heavy snow can come in many forms and depending on the type, the
threats can be different.  Heavy "dry" snow can be easy to shovel
and plow, but it can also blow around easily causing near zero
visibilites and dangerous travel concerns. On the other end of the
spectrum heavy "wet" snow doesn`t blow and drift, but it sticks to
trees causing limbs to break and power outages. In addition the
fatique of shoveling heavy snow can lead to heart attacks.

Blizzards:

The blizzards of 2017 reminded everbody, especially those that lived
in Downeast Maine, the dangers and impacts that a blizzard can
cause. The combination of heavy snow and blowing snow can make
traveling virtually impossible due to near-zero visibility and
drifting of snow. In addition to the snow and blowing snow, the high
winds can also cause power outages due to downed trees and limbs.
This can be especially dangerous due to the very cold wind chills
that accompany these storms.

Ice Storms:

Major ice storms are a real threat in Maine with the most
significant storms over the last 20 years occurring in 1998, 2008,
and 2013.  These storms cause major disrubtions to society due to
prolonged power outages, downed trees and treacherous travel
conditions.  Fortunately major ice storms don`t occur often, but
freezing rain events are very common and although they may not cause
major power outages they are extremely dangerous for traveling. Any
amount of freezing rain on cold roadways can be a major travel
issue.

Coastal Flooding:

Coastal flooding can precede or accompany major winter storms.
Strong south, southeast, east, and northeast winds can cause water
to pile up along the Maine coastline causing tide levels to rise
above normal, leading to flooding.  In addition to abnormally high
tides, large waves associated with a storm can cause erosion along
the coastline.

Hypothermia/Frostbite:

The human body loses heat during the winter due to the conduction
and convection of heat from the skin to nearby air, due to
evaporation of moisture from the skin`s surface, and due to normal
respiration. To compensate for this heat loss, the body burns energy
to produce heat to keep the body temperature at a relatively
constant level. However, if a body loses heat faster than it can
produce heat, the body temperature will cool to below-normal levels.
This is known as hypothermia.  If the central core of the body
continues to cool, uncontrollable shaking, memory loss,
disorientation, incoherence, slurred speech, drowsiness, and
apparent exhaustion may develop.

Frostbite is a condition in which the body tissue actually freezes.
Frostbite is often associated with hypothermia. In a hypothermic
person, the brain greatly reduces the amount of blood that is
circulated to the extremities of the body, causing them to cool.
This increases the chances that the tissue at the end of the
extremity may actually freeze. The most susceptible areas for
frostbite include the fingers, toes, nose, and ear lobes.

High Winds:

High winds can occur before, during, and after major winter storms
and can make driving difficult and dangerous, especially if you
drive a high profile vehicle.  Also, high winds bring increased
danger from falling trees and branches, which can lead to widespread
power outages.

Please revisit our page www.weather.gov/car this week for usefull
winter weather information to get you and your family prepared for
this upcoming season.

In addition follow us on Facebook
https://www.facebook.com/NWSCaribou and Twitter this week
https://twitter.com/nwscaribou for additional information.

$$



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