El Paso, Prepare Your Home, Your Pets, Yourself for Winter Storm
Get ready to hunker down and bundle up, El Paso, because freezing cold temperatures are coming.
The National Weather Service El Paso expects an Artic front to swoop in beginning Wednesday night resulting in “bitterly cold temperatures” through Saturday.
My recommendation as a non-qualified radio guy who has had zero training in the field of meteorology and has no idea how Doppler radar works or what all the pretty colors on the weather models mean is to clean out the grocery store shelves of bread, milk, hot chocolate mix, Pop Tarts, and toilet paper immediately.
A better idea is to make sure you're prepared, and that you keep the four Ps in mind: people, pets, plants, and pipes. Check on the vulnerable, cover up those plants and pipes, and bring in your pets.
You, me, we should avoid unnecessary trips outside. If you must step out, dress in layers, cover your head, hands, feet, and as much exposed skin as you can, stay dry, and limit your time outdoors.
If you can't or won't bring your pet indoors then buy your doggo or kitty an insulated pet house. At the very least, build some kind of a protective enclosure to shield them from the wind and cold.
The surest way of protecting plants is to bring them indoors. If that's not an option than cover them up. Farmer's Almanac suggests using blankets, bed sheets, or drop cloths.Do not use plastic, they caution.
Drape loosely to allow for air circulation. Do not let the material rest on the plants, and remove the coverings when temperatures rise above freezing.
Watering deep the day before also helps. "Moist soil can hold up to four times more heat than a dry soil, conducting heat faster to the soil surface, and keeping the air above it about five degrees warmer."
Here's what El Paso Water recommends:
Insulate exposed pipes and faucets outside and around your home, including those in unheated areas like basements, garages, attics, or crawl spaces. Let cold water drip from faucets served by exposed pipes.
Running a drip of water through the pipes helps prevent pipes from freezing because the temperature of the water is above freezing.