The National Weather Service is now confident the area will receive significant snowfall on Wednesday evening and into Thursday morning. Winnebago, Hancock, Worth, and Cerro Gordo Counties are expected to receive 5 to 9 inches of new snow and it’s anticipated that we will see snowfall rates at or over 1” to 2” per hour. Plows will likely not be able to keep up with keeping the roads completely clear, so residents need to use solid judgement if they venture out this evening.
The combination of heavy snow and winds may also limit visibilities in the area. Parts of Kossuth County such as Algona may see between 6-9 inches of new snow. Rates of snowfall per hour may be worse in these locations. Almost all of Wright and Humboldt Counties will see 5-9 inches while the southern parts of these counties may only see 3-6 inches.
While not recommended, those who have to venture out should communicate with someone when they are leaving and when they return home. Hancock and Winnebago Emergency Manager Andy Buffington explained that this is essential information in case someone becomes stranded.
Most importantly, make sure that there is an emergency kit in the car for just such an emergency.
The kit should include a blanket, water, cell phone charger and phone, food, a shovel, and a flashlight. Hand warmer packs that can be found in sporting goods sections can also help keep the hands and feet warm. Most importantly, do not leave your vehicle to go for help.
Officials in the area are encouraging everyone to simply stay home and listen for storm details and information on kiow.com or KIOW.