Forecasts call for a mixed bag of weather conditions across Indiana this weekend, including freezing rain and ice.
Central Indiana will be under a freezing rain advisory from 7 p.m. Friday through 1 p.m. Sunday. The National Weather Service says .15 to .20 inches of ice accumulation is possible.
With the icy conditions, comes the risk of downed power lines and unsafe travel conditions. As a result, the Indiana Department of Homeland Security, Indiana State Police, Indiana Department of Transportation and the NWS are advising Hoosiers to keep a close eye on weather and road conditions, and make some basic preparations.
Officials suggest staying in touch with dependable weather sources, including the National Weather Service.
Before deciding to drive, check road and traffic conditions at indot.carsprogram.org, 800-261-ROAD (7623) or by turning on the traffic feature on a mobile mapping app. County governments post color-coded travel advisories on the Homeland Security website.
State, county and city law enforcement officials say people should not call police agencies to ask about road conditions. Phone lines need to remain open for true emergency calls.
Is Travel Necessary?
Before hitting the road during bad weather, you should consider if travel is necessary. Can it be delayed? Sometimes travel is better during daylight hours when ice is more likely to melt.
If travel is necessary, officials suggest letting someone know the route, expected time of arrival and how to make contact, and charge your cell phone before leaving.
If you get stranded, it's suggested you do not leave the car unless there is a better shelter within view that can be easily accessed. While in a vehicle, even while stranded, keep wearing your seat belts. Call for help. If you're unable to call for help, tie a brightly colored cloth to the antenna for rescuers to see. As you wait for your rescuers, run the engine for 10 minutes every hour to stay warm and keep the exhaust pipe free of blockage to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning.
Make a Car Preparedness Kit
Officials also recommend motorists gather supplies for their vehicles in the event travel is necessary.
- Cell phone and mobile device chargers
- Bottled water
- Sand or kitty litter
- Extra blankets
- A hand crank flashlight or battery powered flashlight with extra batteries
- Booster (jumper) cables
- Nonperishable food, such as high protein snacks
- First-aid kit