Aransas County residents are bracing for a bitter cold weekend, and should be preparing for an even colder Monday and Tuesday.
The National Weather Service – Corpus Christi sent out a bulletin saying another surge of arctic air is expected to arrive Sunday. Temperatures will remain well below normal, with freezing temperatures expected during the morning hours Sunday through Tuesday.
As the colder air arrives, a window for freezing rain and sleet will develop, with the potential for ice accumulation. Confidence is moderate that wintry precipitation will occur.
Very cold temperatures are forecast Monday night through Tuesday morning, with minimum temperatures ranging from the upper teens across the northern Coastal Bend and Brush County to the lower to middle 20s along the coast. This will result in a hard freeze across the region. Dangerous wind chills of 5 to 20 degrees are also expected.
A hard freeze will have a significant impact on sensitive plants and pets. Elderly persons or children could suffer hypothermia if exposed to extremely cold temperatures for long durations. Exposed water pipes could break.
Some ice or sleet accumulations are possible. Elevated roadways such as bridges and overpasses may become slick and dangerous. Small tree branches may become ice covered and break causing isolated power outages.
Danny Cox Jr., Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) Maintenance Supervisor – Corpus Christi District, said TxDOT crews applied brine (salt solution) on all overpasses and causeways Friday in an effort to lower the freezing temperature of those exposed surfaces.
Beginning Sunday, and continuing through Tuesday, TxDOT will begin 24/7 shiftwork to perform de-icing, and to add chemically-treated rock to roadways, where needed, to improve traction.
“Avoid traveling if you can, but if you have to, drive to conditions,” said Cox.