The Florida Division of Emergency Management Urges Residents to Remain Vigilant as Freezing Temperatures Impact the State
TALLAHASSEE FL – Today, the Florida Division of Emergency Management (Division) urges residents to remain vigilant as freezing temperatures are forecast across the state. Freezing temperatures are more likely during severe weather season, which began in Florida on December 1, 2023 and will continue through its historical peak in February 2024.
“Freezing temperatures can increase hazards such as icy roadways and life threatening conditions outside,” said Division Executive Director Kevin Guthrie. “I implore all residents to take precautions against the cold that will affect the state this severe weather season.”
Wind chill causes temperatures to feel colder than what is forecasted, making conditions even more dangerous. The National Weather Service will issue wind chill advisories, freeze watches or warnings, hard freeze watches or warnings, and winter weather advisories and winter storm warnings if cold and/or wintry weather threatens an area.
Those with outdoor activities planned are advised to check the weather forecast before heading out and postpone outdoor activities if conditions are hazardous.
If freezing temperatures are likely in your area, be sure to follow these additional important safety tips:
- Ensure your NOAA All-Hazards Weather Radio is on and programmed for your area or stay tuned to a trusted local media outlet for the most current weather updates.
- Ensure your disaster supply kit is prepared and heed all instructions from local officials. For tips to help you build a kit, please visit FloridaDisaster.org/Kit.
- Slow down. When roads are icy, vehicles don’t have the traction required to stop quickly.
- Stay alert. When the temperature is near freezing, the roadway may look wet when in fact ice is forming.
Cold Weather Safety – Follow the 5 P’s of Preparedness
- Protect people –Dress in warm layers and wear a hat and gloves. Remember to assist young children and the elderly.
- Protect pets - If cold weather is in the forecast, be sure to bring outdoor pets inside or give them a warm shelter to stay in.
- Protect pipes - Cover exposed outdoor pipes and allow outdoor faucets to slowly drip to prevent from freezing and breaking.
- Practice fire safety - Use safe heating sources indoors. Do not use fuel-burning devices such as grills; they release carbon monoxide, which is a deadly gas. Also, make sure to use space heaters according to their instructions and be attentive to open flames.
- Protect plants – Cover cold sensitive plants to protect them from dangerous temperatures.
The Florida Division of Emergency Management encourages all residents to sign up to receive emergency alerts and other public safety notifications. To find your local notification system, please visit FloridaDisaster.org/AlertFlorida.