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Huntsville faces lowest temperatures in decades

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Winter weather has arrived in Huntsville. Tonight, the lowest temperatures since 2011 will be widespread across the region. The sub-freezing temperatures can be brutal, so people need to prepare for the onslaught of winter.

Snow, sleet, rain, and wind combine together

The winter weather began to hit the region on Sunday. Rain fell most of the late afternoon hours, accompanied by heavy winds. After dark, as temperatures began to fall, the rain transitioned to sleet and then to snow. Some areas had snow accumulations, and areas of moisture left from the rain quickly turned to ice. Temperatures continued to fall overnight Sunday night and all through the day on Monday, and will continue to drop through the night Monday night. The low Tuesday morning is expected to be between two and five degrees, with wind chills between zero and five degrees below zero.

Special precautions need to be taken

With temperatures this cold, special precautions need to be taken. Limit outdoor activity to fifteen minutes or less to avoid frostbite. Leave water running in kitchens and bathrooms to prevent freezing of water lines. Ensure cars have at least half a tank of gas, and a full radiator of antifreeze. Bundle warmly when walking from the house to the car, and remember to dress in layers. Also remember to bring all animals indoors: the brutal cold can kill a cat or dog. If the power goes out, remember to be cautious when using candles and alternative sources of heat to avoid fires or carbon monoxide poisoning. Also, if the power goes out, gradually turn on devices and lights once the power goes back on to avoid a strain on the power grid.

Need to get warm?

Need to get warm, but do not have a warm house or building in which to go? There are warming centers available in all areas of the Tennessee Valley, with some being daylight only, while others being open at all times. Check with a local agency such as the YMCA, United Way, or local hospitals and churches to get a list of locations and times.

The coldest weather in many years will hit the area tonight. Please stay safe and stay warm.

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