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Winter Weather Alert

A cold blast with arctic-like temperatures is set to make its way to Texas in the coming days and temperatures in the Houston area will dip into the teens.

Bitterly cold wind chills are possible late Monday through Wednesday. Wind chills are projected to drop below freezing temperatures Monday evening and will likely not rise until Wednesday, according to a Thursday weather update from the National Weather Service Houston.

Temperatures could dip as low as 11 degrees Tuesday morning in Houston, according to National Weather Service. By Wednesday, temperatures are projected to rise back into the 40s.

“There is still unfortunately quite a bit of uncertainty about the timing of the front,” Eric Berger, a meteorologist with Space City Weather told Houston Public Media. “Some of the latest modeling indicates that it could move in any time between early-to-mid morning Sunday to early morning on Monday.”

Hard freezes and temperatures dipping below 24 degrees will be a threat for several parts of Southeast Texas Sunday night through Tuesday night, according to National Weather Service Houston, which urged that Houston-area residents can expect some long durations of subfreezing temperatures.

“It does appear that the initial front will be dry,” Berger said. “So there’s unlikely to be precipitation with the front.

But freezing precipitation could be possible Monday or Tuesday night, he said.

“There currently is not a strong signal in the models for frozen precipitation, though we will continue to monitor the situation,” according to the weather service.

With the nationwide arctic blast and temps projected in the negatives in some parts of the state, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas issued a weather watch from Jan. 15 through Jan. 17. ERCOT is expecting higher electrical demands and the potential for lower reserves. Despite that, grid conditions are expected to be normal and can be monitored on ERCOT’s webpage.

“ERCOT continues to closely monitor the winter weather moving in over the weekend and will deploy all available tools to reliably mange the grid,” according to the organization.

While temperatures are anticipated to dip below freezing in some areas of Houston, it’s unlikely the weather event will be a disastrous as the February 2021 freeze, Winter Storm Uri, that took a major toll on the state’s power grid, according to Space City Weather.

Here are some suggestions Space City Weather made for people looking to prepare ahead of the freezing blast:

  • Bring potted plants indoors. Apply a thick layer of mulch around ground plants, and cover sensitive plants with a sheet.
  • Cover or insulate exposed pipes, including those under raised homes. Turn off sprinkling systems, and open cabinets to expose pipes to indoor heat.
  • Bring pets indoors and ensure warmth for livestock
  • Check on families and neighbors

Residents should begin cold weather preparations before Saturday evening, the weather service suggests.

Warming centers around Houston are opened in major weather events like freezes. Call 2-1-1 for the latest information.

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