Winter weather is one weather event that many people take for granted. People don't realized that winter weather can cause just as many problems and hardships as any other weather event. January 3 and 4, 2005, caught many people unprepared. Mother Nature dumped ice over the entire state of Kansas, and resulted in a Federal Disaster Declaration for 32 of the 105 Kansas counties, Butler included. Several people were without power for up to one week, some even longer than that. And just 3 years before that, on January 29, 2002, some families in Butler County had already felt the same blow. In 2002, Mother Nature dumped ice over the south and east end of our county, causing major tree damage, snapping off power lines, damaging houses, and leaving hundreds of residents without power for several days. This event did not affect nearly as many people as the 2005 event, but was still devastating to many of our residents. Below are some steps you can take to prepare for a winter storm:
Store drinking water, a first aid kit, canned / no-cook food, a non-electric can opener, a flashlight, and a battery powered radio (include extra batteries!) where you can easily get to them.
Have a NOAA weather radio handy so you can stay tuned to the latest watches and warnings.
Buying a generator can be very helpful as well. Don't wait until the last minute before an ice storm to go out and purchase one, though. Time has proven that it's better to have one long before you need it, rather than heading out when the storm is on the horizon and finding there are none left to buy!