Be aware of season’s dangers

The bitter cold, blowing snow and high winds made this weekend a dangerous one in Minnesota.

Despite several days of dire forecasts and winter storm warnings, there were still a lot of people out on the roads Sunday getting stuck in the drifts, running off the road or into each other in whiteout conditions.

Perhaps we’ve become used to hearing ignoring the weather warnings, especially after some that don’t turn into full-blown blizzards. Like the boy who cried wolf, weather forecasters (who obviously aren’t issuing warnings as pranks) can run the risk of not being taken seriously when the weather doesn’t turn as nasty as they have been predicting. The forecasts for this weekend were spot on, however.

Minnesotans really can’t afford to ignore blizzard warnings and travel advisories. Calling 511 will take you to the Minnesota Department of Transportation’s travel advisory system for current conditions. Those who don’t have to travel should stay home. Those who do should be sure to have plenty of warm clothing, blankets, food and survival kits in their cars.

We should all be thankful, too, for the law enforcement officers, snow plow drivers and other emergency responders who have to head out to handle the accidents and stranded drivers.

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