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Winter Storm Jupiter Has Iowans Preparing for Snow and Ice

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DES MOINES, Iowa  --  Sunday night's expected ice storm has Iowans scrambling to prepare.

"We're almost out of all the de-icer that we're stocked up on, and they're still coming in to get it."

Dawn Ackerson was working the register at Farm and City Supply on the south side of Des Moines on Saturday.

"Up until two days ago I hadn't sold any, so yeah everyone is really preparing," she says.

Ackerson also says she needs to remind people about Sunday's impending storm because of this year's shockingly dry winter.

"This is almost like a summer compared to some of the winters we had. You know, growing up in Iowa I remember as a kid winters were really snowy. Some people, I'll ask them if they need some de-icer and they'll look at me kinda funny and they'll think about it, and they'll be like, 'yeah, yeah I do.'"

Lou Keeley of the Blank Park Zoo says they have all the tools in place to deal with power outages, which can be expected if ice freezes to power lines.

"Let's say our giraffe, if we lost power to that barn the temps would drop pretty low, 30s or 40s, and that's pretty bad for giraffes, so that's when we bring in our big ol' propane heaters to heat the barn up and keep going," says Keeley. "We have back up heating plans to make sure everything is going as smoothly as if we did have power."

However, not every animal will need to be taken inside and away from the elements. Keeley says the camels, built for the extreme cold felt in the desert at night, are naturally well-prepared.

"Those big foot pads that they can go on snow and ice and everything, their coats are so thick that it's great, so they'll probably be outside and enjoying it."

The storm has been named Winter Storm Jupiter, and is already responsible for three deaths.


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