FAIRFIELD COUNTY, Conn. — With strong winds and falling temperatures headed for Fairfield County, the state of Connecticut has activated its cold weather protocols.
The National Weather Service warns that the first of two arctic fronts will move across Fairfield County on Wednesday night. A few scattered snow showers are possible as temperatures drop into the teens and 20s tonight. Winds will also increase, gusting to 25 to 35 mph.
Temperatures on Thursday will stay in the 20s. With a gusting northwest wind, wind chills will be 0 to 10 degrees, the weather service said.
A reinforcing shot of cold air will come with the second front on Thursday night. Overnight into early Friday, lows will drop to 5 to 15 degrees across Fairfield County, with subzero wind chills by Friday morning due to a gusty northwest wind. Wind chill in the single digits or below zero are expected across the region.
Cold will continue Friday as temperatures remain in the 20s, however wind chills will moderate as winds begin to diminish.
A Wind Advisory is in effect from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday, with a High Wind Watch in effect into late Thursday, the weather service said.
Northwest winds of 20 to 35 mph with gusts of up to 50 mph are forecast for Thursday, with 60 mph gusts in the evening.
The wind will be strong enough to possibly blow down trees and power lines, causing power outages.
More snow is possible Friday night, mainly after midnight. The chance of precipitation is 80 percent, with 1 to 2 inches of snow possible.
Snow will continue Saturday morning, with a snow and freezing rain mix between 10 a.m. and noon, then changing to rain as temperatures rise to near 40. The chance of precipitation is 90 percent, with 2 to 4 inches of snow possible.
With the drop in temperatures, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy has activated the state’s Severe Cold Weather Protocol beginning on the evening of Thursday, Dec. 15, and remaining in effect through the morning of Saturday, Dec. 17.
This will "initiate essential services that will help protect our most vulnerable,” Malloy said. “Anyone in need of shelter is urged to call 2-1-1 to find the nearest available locations. I am also encouraging local communities to consider opening warming centers or other facilities to assist people in need.”
While activated, the protocol directs staff from the state’s Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection, the Department of Social Services, the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, and the Department of Housing to coordinate with 2-1-1 and Connecticut’s network of shelters to ensure that the state’s most vulnerable populations are protected from the severe cold weather.
For information on shelters and warming centers, click here .
Click here to sign up for Daily Voice's free daily emails and news alerts.