In preparation for the upcoming winter storm, which is predicted to last through noon Wednesday, Feb. 1, officials are encouraging residents to prepare for the storm.

The National Weather Service issued the winter storm warning effective 9 a.m. Jan. 30.

Officials with the city of Austin Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, HSEM, said in a press release Jan. 30 that they have activated a situational assessment team at the Emergency Operations Center and will be monitoring weather conditions throughout the storm. In addition, the city has activated its cold weather shelters for those experiencing homelessness from Jan. 30 through Jan. 31. These shelters are activated any time the weather is 32 degrees or colder overnight; 35 degrees with precipitation; or 35 degrees with a windchill of 32 or colder. Those seeking information about these shelters can call the cold weather shelter hotline at 512-305-4233. Those who wish to register for the shelter can do so between 6-8 p.m. at One Texas Center, 505 Barton Springs Road, Austin. From there, CapMetro will transport registered individuals to a cold weather shelter, officials said.

Warming Centers have also been activated for the duration of the storm. These centers will happen at parks facilities and libraries and will be available to anyone during business hours.

The following tips were suggested by city officials and include the four P's:
  • People
    • Check on your neighbors and family members and make sure to dress in layers to keep warm;
  • Pets
    • Bring all pets inside to keep them safe and warm;
  • Pipes
    • Insulate or cover any exposed pipes to protect them from freezing. In addition, turn off outside faucets and drip a faucet only if needed; and
  • Plants
    • Cover plants or bring them in to protect them from the cold.
Those wanting to stay apprised of the latest updates from the center can stay informed by downloading the Ready Central Texas phone application; sign up at Warn Central Texas to receive alerts for specific neighborhoods; and follow to get up-to-date emergency information.