Please be weather aware on Wednesday, Dec. 15, as damaging winds are possible across much of Iowa. Central Iowa is expected to see very windy conditions throughout Wednesday, but around 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. (Thursday, Dec. 16), there will be a significant change with around 40 mph sustained wind and 60 to 70 mph gusts. Polk County will activate the outdoor warning sirens within Johnston when there is a thunderstorm warning and winds reach 70+ mph.
Residents can anticipate blown-down trees and power lines. Widespread power outages are expected.
People should avoid being outside in forested areas and around trees and branches. If possible, remain in the lower levels of your home during the windstorm, and avoid windows. Use caution if you must drive. Travel will be difficult, especially for high-profile vehicles.
Secure outdoor items that may be susceptible to high winds. This includes loose outdoor objects (trash/recycling bins) and holiday decorations.
Please ensure you have a plan to keep you and your family safe. Stay tuned to the U.S. National Weather Service Des Moines for updates as this event unfolds.