National Weather Service Issues a Statewide Warning For High Winds Reaching 50 mph

Batten down the hatches! The National Weather Service forecasters are warning Arizona residents a storm will be blowing into Arizona bringing at least 50 mph expected wind.

Forecasters are advising residents to secure loose outdoor yard items and drivers should anticipate challenging driving conditions gusty conditions starting late Tuesday and into Wednesday.

The Arizona Department of Transportation is also warning drivers of possible dust storms, making driving conditions difficult and dangerous. They are reminder drivers to to pull over and turn their lights off if caught up in the storm.

The northern part of the state could possible see wind bursts up to 60 mph and snow is expected this week with a chance of some areas receiving a foot of snow over several days.

On Monday, the National Weather Service issued an early warning to Flagstaff residents of a High Wind Watch and Winter Storm Watch for Tuesday night into Wednesday.

The NWS issues the following tips during a high wind event:

  • Take Shelter
  • Get indoors. Close all windows
  • Immediately go inside a sturdy building during a high wind warning or severe thunderstorm warning and move to an interior room or basement.
  • If you are in a mobile home, move to a sturdy building before the winds pick up or the storm system reaches your location.

If Caught Outside or Driving

  • Take shelter in your car if you are not near a sturdy building. If possible, drive to a nearby sturdy building. Otherwise, move your car to a location where it is less likely to be hit by falling trees or power lines.
  • If no shelter is available avoid trees, power lines, and the side of the road. Keep in mind that power lines that are laying on the ground may be live. Do not go near them! Try to find a place that will block blowing or falling debris.
  • If you are driving and aren’t near a sturdy building, hold the steering wheel with both hands and slow down.
  • Keep a distance from high profile vehicles such as trucks, buses and vehicles towing trailers. One strong gust of wind can be enough to flip one of these trailers onto its side.
  • If driving, pull your vehicle off the pavement as far as possible, stop, turn off lights, set the emergency brake, take your foot off of the brake pedal to be sure the tail lights are not illuminated. If you can’t pull off the roadway, proceed at a speed suitable for visibility, turn on lights and sound horn occasionally. Use the painted center line to help guide you. Look for a safe place to pull off the roadway. Never stop on the traveled portion of the roadway.