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The life cycle of a Weather Alert Day

Winter in Mid-Missouri brings it all.

From rain, to snow, to ice and freezing rain, to life-threatening cold, the ABC 17 Stormtrack Weather Team issues Weather Alert Days ahead of dangerous weather conditions year-round.

The process starts with analyzing critical data for the potential of inconvenient weather that could become life-threatening or dangerous for travel. We serve almost two dozen counties across central Missouri, keeping more than 400,000 Missourians up-to-date on the forecast.

Our team of meteorologists works together to develop a thorough forecast that lays out the impacts and the timeline for our area.

A carefully created set of criteria helps us make the decision to issue a Weather Alert Day. In winter, we look for the potential for accumulating snow, freezing rain or ice, wind chills below zero, and low temperatures below 10 degrees.

From there, it's all hands on deck. The newsroom staff prepares the newscasts to get the most important information to you quickly, and the meteorologists write an Insider Blog with all of the critical details for abc17news.com. That blog gets shared across all platforms so you can stay in the know around the clock.

When a Weather Alert Day is issued, make sure you know how to plan for the weather ahead. Keep a first aid kit, shovel, non-perishable food, a flashlight, phone charger and blanket in your car. Download our free ABC 17 Stormtrack Weather app to keep an eye on the radar to get any severe weather alerts sent right to your phone.

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Jessica Hafner

Jessica Hafner returned to ABC 17 News as chief meteorologist in 2019 after working here under Sharon Ray from 2014 to 2016.

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