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(WJW) – As the first big storm of winter hit Northeast Ohio, it’s important to know what each Snow Emergency Level means to keep you and your family safe.

Sheriffs have declared snow emergencies to let people know the situation on the roads to keep everyone safe.

Active snow emergencies:

Ashland County – Level 1

Erie County – Level 1

Huron County – Level 2

Sandusky County – Level 2

Summit County – Level 1

Here’s what those levels mean, according to the Ohio Committee for Severe Weather Awareness:

LEVEL 1:

Roadways are hazardous with blowing and drifting snow

Roads may also be icy

Motorists are urged to drive very cautiously

LEVEL 2:

Roadways are hazardous with blowing and drifting snow

Roads may also be very icy

Only those who feel it is necessary to drive should be out on the roads

Contact your employer to see if you should report to work

Motorists should use extreme caution

LEVEL 3:

All roadways are closed to non-emergency personnel

No one should be driving during these conditions unless it is absolutely necessary to travel or a personal emergency exists

All employees should contact their employer to see if they should report to work

Those traveling on the roads may subject themselves to arrest

Stay with FOX 8 and FOX8.com for your latest weather updates.