On chilly mornings, as expected for Thursday, motorists should allow extra time to defrost windows, said Augusta-Richmond County Disaster Preparedness Coordinator Mie Lucas. While driving, they should look for frozen patches on the roads, she said.
A cold front pushed into the area Tuesday night, ushering in overnight temperatures that dipped to 30 degrees at Augusta Regional Airport. Wednesday’s high was 52 degrees and even lower temperatures – in the mid-20s – were forecast for Wednesday night, according to the National Weather Service.
Thursday’s high could reach 60 degrees before warmer weather returns for the weekend.
Columbia County Emergency Management Director Pam Tucker said residents prepared well for low temperatures on Tuesday and Wednesday. No problems were reported about icy roads caused by residents leaving on sprinkler systems.
“That kept roads from icing over and prevented wrecks,” Tucker said.
Here are some tips from experts to keep the cold weather season safe:
• Prevent house fires. Lucas does not recommend using space heaters and cautioned to read directions carefully if you chose to use one. Keep heaters away from curtains and carpet, and turn them off when you are sleeping.
• Prepare cars. AAA reminds motorists to check your car for routine maintenance needs. Tire pressure should be checked more frequently in fall and winter. A fully charged battery is needed to start an engine in cold weather. Also, keep an emergency road kit in the car that includes an ice scraper, extra warm clothing and a flashlight with extra batteries.
• Protect pets. Take pets on shorter walks and bring cats and dogs inside during cold weather or provide a warm, solid shelter shielded from wind, according to the American Veterinary Medical Association. Pets that are whining, shivering, seem anxious or weak may be showing signs of hyperthermia.