Snow, potential sub-zero temperatures forecast in the coming week: Extreme cold could lead to freezing pipes, damages to homes, businesses

Drew Butler
The Daily Ardmoreite
News alert

Welcome to the deep freeze. In addition to the cold temperatures already impacting the Ardmore area, four upcoming rounds of potential snowfall will be dropping temperatures even further, potentially bottomming out below zero on Monday. Accumulated snowfall totals could reach over a foot by Wednesday.

Doug Speheger, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Norman, said the first round of snowfall will be coming through during the predawn hours of Sunday morning, and while this snow may not impact Ardmore itself, the areas immediately to the north and northeast of the city may be impacted. The second round which will come through late Sunday morning and into Sunday evening will likely hit everyone.

“There could be some snow developing in the areas to the north and northeast of Ardmore in the the overnight hours before dawn on Sunday,” Speheger said. “Then everyone is in line for snow moving in during the late morning to early afternoon. With that we’re expecting it to last into the evening before starting to move off to the east and become lighter or quit.”

He said this round of snow could bring 6 to 8 inches into the Ardmore area, and it will make driving conditions especially dangerous.

“During the periods when we are seeing moderate to heavy snowfall, the wind is going to be pretty gusty,” he said. “This snow is not going to be the dense wet snow that we typically see in the area, but will be very light — not in the sense of how much is coming down, but in the sense that the wind will be blowing it around quite a bit. So the amount of snow combined with the amount of snow blowing around will significantly reduce visibility and cause problems for anyone traveling or trying to drive.”

Meteorologist Erin Maxwell said more snow will likely be coming through on Tuesday into Wednesday. As with the snow forecast for Sunday, she said this will also likely be in two rounds. Once again the first round will likely affect the areas north of the city, but the second will blanket the entire area.

“For the first round, there is a chance it will occur north of Ardmore during the day on Tuesday,” Maxwell said. “Ardmore has a better chance during the second round, and that will take place late Tuesday night into Wednesday.”

Maxwell said there are currently differences in forecast models, so this round of snow fall could produce as little as 2 to 4 inches of snow or as much as 6 to 8 inches of snow depending on how everything plays out.

Maxwell said temperatures will remain below freezing through out most of the week with daytime highs in the teens through Tuesday and 20s on Wednesday and Thursday. Lows will be extremely cold with a forecast low of -4 for Monday. The soonest temperatures could rise above freezing will be Friday.

“Right now we are forecasting temperatures above freezing on Friday, but depending on cloud cover and how much snow you have received, it may actually stay below freezing well into the weekend,” she said. “After that the general trend right now is that things should warm up after the weekend but there is a potential of another round of winter weather for early next week.”

Extreme cold temperatures could lead to problems for home and business owners in the form of freezing pipes. When temperatures drop so far below freezing for such an extended period of time, the water in those pipes could potentially freeze and burst causing thousands of dollars of damage.

Neil Stitt, owner of Allied Services, said there are some steps people can take to prevent this from happening.

“If you have any vents around the foundation of your homes, cover them up before it gets cold,” Stitt said. “If you leave water flowing from the taps, that will also prevent the water from freezing up. It doesn’t have to be fast — it can just be a drip. Also if you open up your cabinet doors below your sinks that will help keep those pipes warmer.”

He said another major problem comes from people leaving their hoses connected to outdoor faucets. 

“People leave their hoses hooked up to their frost proofed faucets and that will cause them to freeze and break,” Stitt said. “That’s probably the biggest reason for frozen pipes. You can get frost covers for the old-style faucets that are not frost proof and that will help, and you can even put them on the newer frost-proof faucetsfor extra piece of mind. Doing that will also let you make sure hoses are disconnected.”