RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Monday is the start of Winter Weather Preparedness Week and while we’ve already had some cold days, so far we have not had to deal with any significant winter weather…at least not yet.

That brings us to today’s preparedness topic — How we get winter weather!

On average, the Triangle gets roughly five inches of snow every year, but significant events can still happen. When they do, it’s usually because of a coastal low.

These lows ride up along the coast, pulling in moisture from the Atlantic. These systems cannot only bring us snow, but freezing rain as well.

But there is also another way we can get messy, winter weather.

“There’s also a scenario where low pressure approaches us from the west, we get cold air trapped near the surface, and then as that low moves to the coast, it can bring us a wide variety of wintry weather,” explains Warning Coordination Meteorologist Nick Petro, with the National Weather Service in Raleigh.

He says even though our winter weather outlook for this year does favor warmer than average and drier than average conditions. One winter weather event, even if it doesn’t bring us a lot of snow or ice, is enough to cause issues.

“You always need to prepare for that one storm, because one really bad winter storm can make a winter season memorable, even if the rest of the season is warm and dry,” Petro says. He also adds “we basically need to be prepared for the smallest of winter weather events just like we would prepare for the largest of winter weather events.”

When the weather is bad or even extremely cold, how do you keep your home and everyone inside safe? We are helping you get prepared for winter weather all week, so the CBS 17 Storm Team will bring more on that topic Tuesday.