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Public Safety

City of Houston
News Release
Saturday, December 30, 2017

The National Weather Service (NWS) says that the Houston area will begin experiencing frigid temperatures beginning Sunday afternoon, through New Year's Day and into early next week. 

As of Saturday, NWS forecasts show temperatures in downtown Houston ranging from 32 on Sunday morning to 26 on Tuesday morning. High winds mean the possibility of wind chills nearing 10 degrees. 

Ahead of cold weather, Houston residents should be preparing themselves and their homes, as well as adjusting travel and New Year's Eve celebration plans accordingly.

While no snow or freezing rain is expected, residents should stay informed of changing conditions ahead of this cold snap.

Cold Temperatures, Protect the 4 P’s

When cold temperatures are expected  it’s important to remember to protect the 4 Ps (People, Pets, Pipes and Plants).

  • People should dress warmly, in layers, to avoid hypothermia (abnormally low body temperature).
  • Pets should be brought indoors or provided with a warm place to sleep.
  • Pipes that run outside or under a house should be wrapped in pipe insulation to avoid cracks due to water freezing in them.
  • Plants may need to be covered or brought inside to avoid frost damage.

Safely Use Space Heaters

As temperatures drop, residents may seek to use portable space heaters to keep warm.  The Houston Fire Department (HFD) reminds residents of the following safety tips:

  • Make sure you have a working smoke alarm.
  • Never leave children unattended in a room with a space heater – Children knock over space heaters especially if they are placed on top of wobbly tables or stools and near where the children play. Children may also stick paper or toys in the grates of the space heaters especially gas space heaters. The city had two reported fires in 2004 caused by children playing with space heaters.
  • Keep all combustible materials, including yourself at least 3 feet from the heater
  • Open face heaters should have a screen
  • Provide ventilation to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning

Electric Heaters Tips

  • Never overload outlets or breakers
  • Don’t use extension cords for the heater. If the cord is hot to the touch, turn off the heater and unplug it!
  • Electric heaters permanently installed in the wall or ceiling should have lint and dust removed regularly. Lint and dust will burn!

For additional information on safely using space heaters, visit

Prevent Freezing Pipes

(Tips from Houston Public Works & Houston Water)

To prevent property damage and potential water leaks due to frozen or broken water pipes, Houston Water reminds the community to:

      Before Freezing Weather

  • Wrap exposed pipes located outside or in unheated areas of the home
  • Remove garden hoses connected to outside faucets

      In Freezing Weather   

  • Open cabinet doors under sinks next to outside walls
  • In unheated garages, shut off water to washing machines
  • Take extra precautions to protect pipes that have frozen in the past

      Not Going to Be Home?

  • Drain outside water faucets or leave home heating system on low
  • If there is a water line break and the customer is unable to locate the shut-off valve, call 311.

Rental Property Tips

Landlords are obligated to maintain their rental properties to the minimum standards set by the Houston Housing Code of Ordinances (Sec. 10-363).

Heating equipment must be able to maintain a minimum inside temperature of 70 degrees Fahrenheit (measured three feet above the floor) when it is 20 degrees Fahrenheit outside. To report suspected violations, call 311.


Stay Updated

For the latest forecast from the National Weather Service, visit

For information on roadway conditions, visit or follow TxDOT on Twitter @TXDOTHoustonPIO.

Please note that icy conditions may cause delays at Houston airports.  If you are planning to travel, check with your carrier before heading to the airport.  Visit for information.

For the latest weather forecast, visit

Remembering Jim Guidry

Guidry News Service is headquartered in Midtown Houston.
at 4001 Fannin Street, Suite 4109, Houston, TX. 77004-4077
(409) 763 NEWS(6397)
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