Dec. 22-26 Cold weather prep and response
The National Weather Service is expecting freezing temperatures, sub-zero wind chills, and hard freezes Thursday through Sunday, Dec. 22 through 26.
Wind chill temperatures are expected to reach below zero as early as Thursday afternoon. By Friday morning, temperatures are forecasted to be in the low-to mid-teens in Georgetown. Wind Chill Watch has been issued for our area from Thursday evening through Friday morning, and a Hard Freeze Watch is in effect from Thursday afternoon through Saturday morning. Wind chills are expected to dip into the -8 to -11 degrees range. No precipitation is forecasted, but City crews will continue to monitor and respond as needed.
Please note risk of hypothermia and damage to exposed pipes are possible. We will likely see below-freezing temperatures over much of our city for more than 42 hours from Thursday night through early Saturday afternoon.
Protect people, pipes, pets, and plants
Temperatures are forecasted to dip below freezing this week in Georgetown. In Central Texas, overnight temperatures can drop below freezing throughout the winter months. Here are ways to keep people, pipes, pets, and plants from freezing.
People especially children and the elderly, need protection from the cold. Dress in layers and wear a hat that covers your ears to retain body heat. Also protect your extremities with warm socks and gloves.
Pipes can freeze and burst in lower temperatures. Be sure to protect outdoor water spigots with faucet covers and use foam pipe insulation on outdoor pipes. Above-ground irrigation backflow devices can also freeze, so remember to wrap or insulate them, and turn off backflow water valves and irrigation system controllers to reduce the freeze potential.
There is a risk for damage to exposed pipes during this hard freeze, especially across Central Texas. When water freezes, it expands and can burst the pipe. To protect your indoor pipes, open cabinet doors and eliminate drafts where water supply lines are located in unheated areas.
In the event of frozen pipes, it’s recommended that you turn off your water at the main shut-off valve to prevent additional damage when the pipes unfreeze. Learn how to find and operate your main shut-off valve here.
Pets such as cats and dogs, need access to shelter to protect them from cool temperatures and winds, and an unfrozen water source. Bring all pets inside and provide plenty of blankets for warmth. Once it is above freezing again, pets can be left outside if you provide a dry, draft-free shelter just large enough for them to lay down and protected from wind and rain. Outdoor pets may also need additional caloric intake to help them maintain their body heat.
Plants in containers are more susceptible to freezing temperatures because they lack the insulation the earth naturally provides. Move container plants inside or put them on the south side of the house, water them and pile on mulch, leaves and hay to protect the roots, and/or cover them with a frost blanket.
Check out these cold weather preparedness tips from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
City facilities closed Friday and Monday
City of Georgetown offices are closed Friday and Monday, Dec. 23 and 26, in observance of the Christmas holiday. View a full list of holiday closures. Essential employees will remain on standby throughout the event.
Public restrooms and drinking fountains in City parks are closed, likely through Monday.
Trash and Recycling Collection
Texas Disposal Systems does not anticipate changes to trash and recycling pickup as a result of the winter weather or holiday. For questions about solid waste collection, call TDS at 512-930-1715.
GoGeo paratransit service
GoGeo paratransit will not operate Friday, Dec. 23, Monday, Dec. 26, and Monday, Jan. 2, in observance of the holidays.
ERCOT, the Texas energy grid operator, is closely monitoring changing weather conditions. In the Dec. 16 news release, ERCOT, “expects sufficient generation to meet the forecasted demand and will continue to provide updates.”
There is a chance for isolated or sporadic power outages due to gusty winds. However, the City has taken steps to reduce the chance of outages on the Georgetown electric system related to equipment or power lines. Read more about our winter-weather resiliency efforts. Additionally, the Georgetown Electric Utility is staffing up for Friday and Saturday to respond to weather-related outages and emergencies.
If you are experiencing an outage, and are a City of Georgetown electric customer, please first view our online outage maps to confirm we know about your outage. If you don’t see your location included in the outage, please call 512-930-3640, then press 1 to report it. Our system will recognize your number if it’s tied to your utility account.
Watch this video for more tips and information about electric outages in Georgetown:
Many Georgetown residents may not have City electric. Other area providers include Oncor and PEC
Generators have been placed at key City water facilities that were out during winter storm Uri. All equipment has been winterized. All water tanks are being taken up to high, summer peak-demand levels.
A risk for hypothermia exists for those spending extended time outdoors and not dressed in layers and gloves.
The City is working with The Caring Place and the Ministerial Alliance to provide after-hours assistance in the form of emergency hotel stay vouchers for those needing shelter when temperatures are 32 degrees or below, or the temperature is 35 degrees or below and it is raining. Vouchers are limited.
The Caring Place will be closed Friday through Monday for the holiday. If you need assistance after-hours, and all other options have been exhausted, please call the Police Non-Emergency Line at 512-930-3510.
Read information about warming centers throughout Texas.
- Sign up with Warn Central Texas to receive emergency weather updates.
- Weather maps and current forecasts can be found on the Austin/San Antonio National Weather Service.
Check Road Conditions
- The ATX Floods Interactive Map
- DriveTexas Interactive Drive Conditions Map
- The Williamson County Weather Monitoring Map
- View outages in the Georgetown service area.
- For additional information on what you can do during an outage, visit the Red Cross Power Outage page.
City Social Media
Follow us on social media for updates on this weather event and other important information:
- Find out how to update your contact information and make sure we are able to contact you in case of an emergency.
- Learn how to make a family emergency plan.
- Learn more winter preparation tips from Atmos Energy.