New updates from the National Weather Service (NWS) have issued a chilling forecast for Houston and its surrounding areas, warning of sub-freezing temperatures as low as 18 degrees Fahrenheit expected from late Monday night through Wednesday morning. An alert released at 9:07 a.m. on Sunday highlights that parts of south Central and Southeast Texas are now under a hard freeze watch, prompting residents to take precautionary measures to safeguard crops and property from potential freeze damage.
The NWS advises residents to act promptly in protecting tender plants from the impending cold. To mitigate the risk of freezing and potential bursting of outdoor water pipes, precautionary steps such as wrapping, draining, or allowing a slow drip are recommended. However, Houston Public Works is urging residents not to employ faucet dripping if their water source is from a pumping station, a condition applicable to nearly everyone in the city.
In addition to the freezing temperatures, a winter weather advisory issued at 3:30 a.m. warns that Houston and neighboring cities may experience mixed precipitation and ice accumulation from 6 p.m. on Sunday to 6 p.m. on Monday. NWS officials caution residents in the affected areas to prepare for possible power outages and challenging driving conditions. A Wind Chill Advisory is also in effect, as noted in a tweet from NWS Houston, accompanied by a forecast map.
The Energy Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) has taken to social media to remind Texans of its own weather watch, effective from Sunday through Wednesday. Described as the lowest level of grid condition notices within the Texas Advisory and Notification System (TXANS), a weather watch indicates that “the grid is operating normally, with supply and demand balanced, but reserves are dropping,” according to ERCOT. Citizens can stay informed about real-time grid conditions at ercot.com and sign up for TXANS updates to receive timely information as the situation unfolds.