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High winds & plummeting low temps bring early taste of winter

FERNDALE, Wash. — Forecasters with the National Weather (NWS) Service Seattle office say to expect powerful northeasterly winds along with sub-freezing temperatures this weekend.

The NWS has issued a wind advisory for 9pm tonight, Friday, October 23rd, through 1pm tomorrow for San Juan, western Whatcom and western Skagit Counties. Sustained northeast winds of 25 to 35mph with gusts up to 50mph can be expected according to the advisory statement. The potential for downed trees and broken tree limbs and property damage and power outages that can result is increased due to leaves still remaining on most trees.

The NWS has also issued a freeze watch for late Saturday through Sunday morning. Sub-freezing temperatures of 27 to 31 degrees are possible the statement said. Frost and freezing conditions can kill crops and other sensitive vegetation and possibly damage unprotected outdoor plumbing.

Fortunately, no precipitation is expected during the wind and freezing temperature events. Temperatures are expected to return to more seasonal levels next week.

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Readers can stay up-to-date on the latest weather forecast for the Ferndale area by visiting the My Ferndale News weather page.

The forecast provides an opportunity to be prepared. The American Red Cross provides tips for preparing for a winter storm. Relevant tips include:

  • Winterize your vehicle(s) and keep the gas tank(s) full. A full tank will keep the fuel line from freezing.
  • If you will be going away during cold weather, leave the heat on in your home, set to a temperature no lower than 55° F to prevent pipes from freezing.
  • Running water, even at a trickle, helps prevent pipes from freezing.
  • Keep garage doors closed if there are water supply lines in the garage.
  • Open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing. Be sure to move any harmful cleaners and household chemicals up out of the reach of children.
  • Keep the thermostat set to the same temperature both during the day and at night. By temporarily suspending the use of lower nighttime temperatures, you may incur a higher heating bill, but you can prevent a much more costly repair job if pipes freeze and burst.
  • Use sand, rock salt or non-clumping kitty litter to make walkways and steps less slippery.
  • Bring pets/companion animals inside during winter weather. Move other animals or livestock to sheltered areas and make sure that their access to food and water is not blocked by snow drifts, ice or other obstacles.
  • All fuel-burning equipment should be vented to the outside and kept clear.
  • Help people who require special assistance such as elderly people living alone, people with disabilities and children.

Remember: Carbon Monoxide Kills

Never use a generator, grill, camp stove or other gasoline, propane, natural gas or charcoal-burning devices inside a home, garage, basement, crawlspace or any partially enclosed area. Locate such a device away from doors, windows and vents that could allow carbon monoxide to come indoors.

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