What Does La Niña Winter Mean?
What is La Niña?
The term La Niña refers to a climate pattern that begins in the Pacific Ocean but has a domino affect around the globe. For North America, La Niña conditions mean:
- Trade winds strengthen as they blow across the pacific
- Cold seawater upwells on the west coast of North America
- This colder water pocket pushes the polar jet stream farther north
These conditions result in:
- Colder, wetter winter in the north
- Warmer, drier winter in the south
- Variable, less predictable conditions across the horizontal center of the US
- Increased hurricane activity for the gulf states
What Does La Niña Winter Mean for Roads?
Whether you are behind the wheel of your family vehicle or manning a snow plow, La Niña can have far reaching effects for road safety.
Northern and Variable Zone Roads
Lower Air Temperatures
- Make sure you have a winter safety kit in your vehicle so you are prepared for roadside emergencies.
- Switch to a windshield washer fluid that is rated for lower temperatures.
- If you drive an electric vehicle (EV) prepare for decreased driving range due to increased heater usage.
Lower Pavement/Ground Temperatures
- Expect more aggressive re-freezing cycles on paved surfaces.
- Use deicer with complex chlorides containing calcium chloride and magnesium chloride so you can melt ice and snow below 20° F.
- Learn what to do when and if you hit black ice.
Higher Precipitation Rates
- Snow fighting crews will likely have to make additional passes for heavy storms.
- Replace windshield wipers to prepare for heavy precipitation.
- Consider purchasing winter tires for your vehicle to improve traction.
- Brush up on your winter driving skills.
*Snow Fighting Teams*
- Click here to learn more about choosing road treatments based upon storm conditions
- Click here to learn about using route optimization software for your crew
- Flaunt your dry and clear roads all over social media to make northerners jealous
What Does La Niña Winter Mean for the Homefront?
Let’s look at how La Niña conditions can affect your home and businesses.
Northern and Variable Zone Homes and Businesses
- Stock up on granular ice melt with complex chlorides (including calcium chloride and magnesium chloride) so it will work below 20° F.
- Check structures for heat leaks (windows, doors, compromised siding, etc.) and repair, add insulation accordingly.
- Learn the symptoms and treatment for hypothermia and frostbite.
- Have an alternative heating plan in case of power loss (friends or family to stay with, emergency generators, etc.)
Heavier Precipitation and More Frequent Storms
- Sign up for reliable weather alerts and have a pre-storm plan in place.
- Apply a light application of ice melt before storms hit to prevent ice from bonding to pavement and make shoveling easier.
- Click here to get our free Winter Home Guide and learn how to prepare for winter.
Southern Homes and Businesses
- Get ready for a lot of visitors and tourists from the north!
Ice Slicer®: For All Storm Conditions
No matter what La Niña throws your way, Ice Slicer® (for roads) and Nature’s Blend (for homes) offers Mother Nature’s perfect recipe for melting ice and snow. Harvested from a Jurassic Era sea deposit in central Utah, our naturally high performing deicer contains all the complex chlorides you need for a rougher winter.
- Perfect granules for a range of light to heavy snowfall rates
- Complex chlorides: naturally occurring sodium, calcium, potassium, and magnesium chloride to perform above and below 20° F
- Effective for pre-storm applications and after snow accumulates
- Restores traction quickly in snow or ice storm conditions
© 2021 Redmond Minerals Inc.