The Associated Press
Forecasters issued a winter storm warning for a large swath of Oklahoma as cold air and abundant moisture are poised to cover the state.
The National Weather Service says rain on Thursday will switch over to freezing rain in parts of the state, and freezing rain and sleet will continue into Thursday night. Much of the preciptiation is expected to switch over to all snow before ending on Friday.
A half-inch of freezing rain could be possible in some areas, along with significant sleet. Some areas will see power outages and travel will be treacherous.
The winter storm warning is in effect from southwestern Oklahoma to the eastern border near Fort Smith. All parts of the state except far southeastern Oklahoma are under a winter storm warning or advisory.
The American Red Cross and AAA are offering safety tips ahead of a winter storm that is expected to drop temperatures and bring a wintry mix of snow, ice and sleet.
The Red Cross says people should prepare a storm kit that includes warm clothes, blankets, first-aid kit, canned food and water. Cars should be winterized and gas tanks full. Homes should be insulated and water should run to prevent pipes from freezing.
AAA is urging residents to drive slowly on roads and accelerate and decelerate cautiously.
And the easiest way to stay safe during a winter storm? Stay at home. AAA says that if someone doesn’t have to go out, they shouldn’t.