Be Prepared for Dangerously Cold Weather!

Ferris State University has issued an important announcement about the unusually cold weather we are expecting this coming week. If you don’t currently have warm winter clothes, think about getting some. The Goodwill Store is open on Sunday. If any honors students need winter clothes and can’t get to a store, they can contact me at, and I will try to help.

Be mindful of the information in the Ferris announcement:

The National Weather Service issued the following Hazardous Weather Outlook today (1/25/2019) at 11:17AM.

This hazardous weather outlook is for portions of southwest Lower Michigan including Mecosta and Kent county. View the Weather Story at:

DAY ONE (FRIDAY)…This Afternoon and Tonight

Lake effect snow showers and bitter cold will continue to create hazardous travel conditions into tonight, particularly near and west of a line from Cadillac to Grand Rapids to Kalamazoo.

DAYS TWO THROUGH SEVEN…Saturday through Thursday

Lake effect snow showers will persist over the weekend, re-intensifying for a time on Saturday night.

Widespread snow accumulations, possibly significant, are expected Monday, followed by additional lake effect snow showers Tuesday and Wednesday.

Life threatening cold air will arrive by the middle of next week, with dangerous wind chills as low as 35 below.

Visit the National Weather Service for the most up to date weather information at:

While on campus take a few extra seconds to review conditions and prepare yourself for the walk to your building. Watch for slippery areas in parking lots, walks and building entrances where snow, ice or water can accumulate. A pair of boots with a non-slip soles are an good choice for footwear. In extreme conditions, traction aids that attach to your footwear can help prevent slips and falls. Remember to remove traction aids before walking on interior building floors to prevent slipping.

Tips for winter weather:
Walk with shorter, choppier steps with toes pointed slightly outward when on slippery surfaces.
Wear winter shoes/boots outside and change once inside.
Wear multiple layers and cover exposed skin to prevent frostbite.
Wear a hat to protect your ears and preserve body heat.
Wear sunglasses to cut down on glare.
Report slippery areas that need attention via the work order system.

The Physical Plant Grounds department is hard at work keeping walks, parking lots and roadways clear. However, they are responsible for about 23 miles of walks, 54 acres of parking lots, and 4.3 miles of roadways, it takes a lot of time to clear all of these areas. The Grounds Crew often start their days at 3AM to meet the demands of winter weather. Please be aware of campus conditions and snow removal equipment operating in the area.

Sign up to receive official Ferris State University Emergency Text Alerts so you are the first to know about time-sensitive campus safety issues, closings due to weather, or other disruptions. Instructions can be found at:

FEMA Winter Weather Preparedness video:

Winter weather preparedness information is available on line at:

Thank you!
Mike McKay, CSHM
Director – SHERM*
Ferris State University
420 Oak St., PRK 153
Big Rapids, Mi 49307
(231)591-2147 office
(231)591-2978 fax

*The Safety, Health, Environmental and Risk Management (SHERM) Department has been established to provide a comprehensive program of services and activities to assist colleges and departments in protecting faculty, staff, students, visitors and the environment.