Winter Storm Warning In Effect Sunday and Monday
Almost all of Texas is expecting wintry weather with everything from prolonged freezing temperatures to freezing rain to snow in the forecast over the next few days.
Governor Abbott issued a disaster proclamation for all 254 counties on Friday (02.12.21) and the National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Warning for our area from midnight Sunday morning through 6:00 p.m. Monday.
Here's what everyone is expecting to happen. Snow will probably begin falling in the overnight hours Sunday morning, increasing in coverage and intensity throughout the day Sunday. With blustery winds and a forecast high only in the mid teens on Sunday travel will become difficult and dangerous.
Snow is expected to continue falling through Sunday evening before tapering off. We are also expecting extremely cold overnight lows Sunday and Monday night, possibly even below zero. We may not see high temperatures above freezing until Thursday or Friday. The forecasts are updated several times daily so be sure to monitor the situation as it will change frequently.
If you do not need to get out and travel your best choice is to stay home. If you do need to travel make sure that you have plenty of emergency supplies, even for a trip across town. If you happen to get involved in something as simple as a fender-bender you can find yourself outside or sitting in a car with no heat for some time. TxDOT recommends you have a basic first aid kit, booster cables, abrasive materials like sand or cat litter to put under your tires if you're stuck, flashights, warm clothes, flares and matches, a blanket or two, and water and snacks.
TxDOT crews have been busy preparing for this storm by prepositioning supplies, making sure their equipment is functioning properly, and pretreating when practical.
TxDOT maintains 6,800 lane miles of roadways in just the Wichita Falls District including the ones you need to drive on. The more time you give their crews to clear any snow from the roads the faster they'll thaw out. By driving on the roads before they're cleared your vehicle's tires compress the snow into ice which takes longer to melt and clear away.
If you must drive you can check the road conditions online at DriveTexas.org. From their interactive map you can check the road conditions locally or anywhere across the state.
You can also follow the TxDOT Wichita Falls page on Facebook for regular updates about travel conditions during this storm and throughout the year.
The combination of extremely cold temperatures and difficult driving conditions make this an unusually dangerous storm. Stay home if you can, keep up with your friends by phone or on social media, and reach out to those you know who may be struggling to stay warm.