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When winter weather arrives, will you be ready?

National Weather Service Forecast Office Goodland KS. Photo: Brad Schick, NWS.

When we talk about emergency weather preparedness, the discussion often refers to spring storms, National Hurricane Preparedness Week and the annual hurricane season. However, severe weather events aren't limited to the warmer seasons. Severe weather can happen anytime, including and especially during winter. Just because the monsoon season is over doesn't mean we can let our guard down. A blizzard may be just around the corner. So here's another variation on the same old question. When winter weather arrives, will you be ready?

Snow and ice storms aren't mere annoyances. They can be dangerous, destructive and devastating. Severe winter storms can create power outages, communication disruptions, and road hazards. They can make streets impassable, air travel impossible and any outdoor activity extremely limited. In some situations they can leave people immobile, trapping them for days indoors. It's not over when it's over, either. When the snow and ice begin to melt, the flooding begins.

Do you have an emergency preparedness kit? If not, the time to build it is now. The Department of Homeland Security created an entire web site to help you build your own emergency preparedness kit. Called ready.gov, this site gives you more than just a simple checklist of items to have in case of an emergency. It provides valuable information about many types of disasters and helps you develop an emergency plan for survival. Sure, It takes some effort now, but it can save you a lot of trouble later, and possibly even save lives.

Build A Kit lists 13 essential items you need to assemble a basic disaster kit. The most important item on this list, without question, is water. The second item is food. The number 3 item on this list is a radio.

A radio is a crucial item to have in a weather emergency, after food and water of course, because it is a basic, tried and true form of communication, a technology proven time and again to be indispensible in a natural disaster or severe weather event. It can serve as an early warning system before a disaster, providing advance notice of an impending event so you can gain precious time to evacuate or prepare. Afterwards, when the power is out and other forms of communication are down, a radio can be a lifeline to the outside world, to keep you informed of relief efforts as well as potentially hazardous or threatening post-storm situations around you.

There are many emergency and weather radios on the market, and they vary in features, form, and function. While their primary purpose is generally the same, these radios are not equal. Some are intended for use in the home or office, some outdoors. Some are base stations, others are mobile or even handheld. Each is designed for a specific type of operating environment, scenario or user. In other words, the emergency radio isn't for purchase as an after thought. It's a choice, based on your requirements, environment, budget and needs.

At Buy Two Way Radios, we understand the many choices and options available. This is why we recently updated our Emergency Weather Radio Comparison Guide for 2017. This handy, one page guide takes all emergency and weather radios currently listed on our web site and compares their key features on a simple chart for quick and easy reference at a glance. Best of all, there is no price for this portable document. The Emergency Weather Radio Comparison Guide 2017 is FREE to download and print for your personal perusal and reference.

Here is a quick overview of some popular features included with the weather radios listed on the chart and currently available on our site.

Emergency Weather Radio Comparison Chart 2017

Model Weather
Display USB Backup
Midland HH50
Midland HH54VP
Midland EX37VP
Midland ER210
Midland ER310
Midland WR-120
Midland WR400
Motorola MWR839

For more information about choosing an emergency weather radio, listen to The Two Way Radio Show Episode 13 - Emergency and Weather Radios.

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