Region ready to slip into the cold


Herald Writer

EVERETT — So, like many of your procrastinating neighbors, you’re still not ready for subfreezing weather?

Well, there’s no time like the present to gear up for the cold. With snow and ice forecast for today, utilities, emergency management agencies and hardware employees offered suggestions to help citizens get ready to deal with the cold and the hazardous driving conditions that could result from it.

Drivers should make sure their cars are equipped with tires able to handle the winter weather, advises the Washington State Emergency Management Division on its Web site.

Also, allow extra time for stopping on icy roads, particularly when the temperatures are just barely freezing. At 32 degrees or just above, ice may be just beneath a thin layer of water, causing slippery conditions. At 32 degrees, motorists need twice as much distance to stop on the ice as they do at 0 degrees, the agency states.

Another danger is "black ice," ice that remains on the parts of roadways that aren’t in direct sunlight. Black ice is particularly likely on bridges, which freeze first because they are surrounded by cold air.

Cold weather saps the strength of car batteries. This is a good time to check battery condition and anti-freeze levels in your car’s engine, the agency suggests.

At the Lowe’s hardware store in Everett, where customers snapped up sandbags, space heaters and faucet covers on Saturday, employee Chris McDowell suggested lowering tire pressure slightly to gain better traction.

"And don’t slam on your brakes if you do slide," McDowell said. "Don’t freak out."

Alternatively, drivers can follow the example of Bambi Rankins, an Everett woman who joined a rush of people buying snow tires at Sears Saturday.

Rankins takes the bus to her job in Lynnwood whenever roads are icy, not because she is afraid of slick roads but because she fears other drivers.

"When you go on Highway 99, you see people driving too close together and you know they can’t stop," Rankins said. "I see fender-benders over and over again."

Drivers aren’t the only ones who will need to worry about the cold. Power outages are a possibility because of storms and car vs. utility pole accidents. The emergency management agency suggests keeping certain supplies on hand, such as extra blankets, warm clothing, a flashlight with extra batteries, a battery-powered radio, canned food and a manual can opener.

Or you can go the extra mile and just insulate your house, like Darin and RaeAnn Nelson of Everett did. The Nelsons wheeled three huge rolls of insulation out of Lowe’s, intending to insulate their garage.

Being prepared for the cold enables the couple to actually enjoy wintry conditions.

"I definitely hope it does snow. I want to play around in it," said RaeAnn Nelson.

Talk to us

> Give us your news tips.

> Send us a letter to the editor.

> More Herald contact information.

More in Local News

Snohomish residents Barbara Bailey, right, and Beth Jarvis sit on a gate atop a levee on Bailey’s property on Monday, May 13, 2024, at Bailey Farm in Snohomish, Washington. Bailey is concerned the expansion of nearby Harvey Field Airport will lead to levee failures during future flood events due to a reduction of space for floodwater to safely go. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Harvey Field seeks to reroute runway in floodplain, faces new pushback

Snohomish farmers and neighbors worry the project will be disruptive and worsen flooding. Ownership advised people to “read the science.”

IAM District 751 machinists join the picket line to support Boeing firefighters during their lockout from the company on Thursday, May 16, 2024, in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Amid lockout, Boeing, union firefighters return to bargaining table

The firefighters and the planemaker held limited negotiations this week: They plan to meet again Monday, but a lockout continues.

2 injured in Bothell Everett Highway crash

The highway was briefly reduced to one northbound lane while police investigated the three-car crash Saturday afternoon.

Heavy traffic northbound on 1-5 in Everett, Washington on August 31, 2022.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
On I-5 in Everett, traffic nightmare is reminder we’re ‘very vulnerable’

After a police shooting shut down the freeway, commutes turned into all-night affairs. It was just a hint of what could be in a widespread disaster.

Anthony Brock performs at Artisans PNW during the first day of the Fisherman’s Village Music Fest on Thursday, May 16, 2024 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
At downtown Everett musical festival: ‘Be weird and dance with us’

In its first night, Fisherman’s Village brought together people who “might not normally be in the same room together” — with big acts still to come.

Two troopers place a photo of slain Washington State Patrol trooper Chris Gadd outside District 7 Headquarters about twelve hours after Gadd was struck and killed on southbound I-5 about a mile from the headquarters on Saturday, March 2, 2024, in Marysville, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Judge reduces bail for driver accused of killing Marysville trooper

After hearing from Raul Benitez Santana’s family, a judge decreased bail to $100,000. A deputy prosecutor said he was “very disappointed.”

Pet detective Jim Branson stops to poke through some fur that Raphael the dog found while searching on Saturday, March 2, 2024, in Everett, Washington. Branson determined the fur in question was likely from a rabbit, and not a missing cat.(Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Lost a pet? Pet detective James Branson and his dogs may be able to help

James Branson, founder of Three Retrievers Lost Pet Rescue, helps people in the Seattle area find their missing pets for $350.

Community Transit leaders, from left, Chief Communications Officer Geoff Patrick, Zero-Emissions Program Manager Jay Heim, PIO Monica Spain, Director of Maintenance Mike Swehla and CEO Ric Ilgenfritz stand in front of Community Transit’s hydrogen-powered bus on Monday, May 13, 2024, at the Community Transit Operations Base in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
New hydrogen, electric buses get trial run in Snohomish County

As part of a zero-emission pilot program from Community Transit, the hydrogen bus will be the first in the Puget Sound area.

Two people fight on the side of I-5 neat Marysville. (Photo provided by WSDOT)
Video: Man charged at trooper, shouting ‘Who’s the boss?’ before shooting

The deadly shooting shut down northbound I-5 near Everett for hours. Neither the trooper nor the deceased had been identified as of Friday.

Two people fight on the side of I-5 neat Marysville. (Photo provided by WSDOT)
Road rage, fatal police shooting along I-5 blocks traffic near Everett

An attack on road workers preceded a report of shots fired Thursday, snarling freeway traffic in the region for hours.

The Port of Everett and Everett Marina on Tuesday, Dec. 19, 2023 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Is Port of Everett’s proposed expansion a ‘stealth tax?’ Judge says no

A Snohomish resident lost a battle in court this week protesting what he believes is a misleading measure from the Port of Everett.

Pablo Garduno and the team at Barbacoa Judith’s churn out pit-roasted lamb tacos by the dozen at the Hidden Gems Weekend Market on Sunday, April 28, 2024, at Boom City in Tulalip, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Eating our way through Tulalip’s Hidden Gems weekend market

Don’t miss the pupusas, pit-roasted lamb tacos, elotes and even produce for your next meal.

Support local journalism

If you value local news, make a gift now to support the trusted journalism you get in The Daily Herald. Donations processed in this system are not tax deductible.