Central Texas prepares for hard freeze

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by STEVE ALBERTS / KVUE News

kvue.com

Posted on December 4, 2009 at 5:11 PM

By the time the snow arrived in Austin you had to look fast or you missed it.

Light flurries fell on the south side of the Capitol just after noon Thursday. There was not even enough snow to dust the Capitol tree.  

“I was disappointed,” said Maria Eva Fernandez.“I wanted to see snow.”

Melisa Creamer added it would have been fun to see the white stuff for a day.

“I am originally from Seattle so kind of use for the snow,” she said. “I have lived in Austin for a year and haven't seen it snow here.”

Despite missing out on the snow, Central Texas will get its first hard freeze overnight. The City Of Austin has declared a Stage 3 emergency and has activated its winter shelter plan.

“When the temperature drops below 40 degrees, it triggers one level,” said John Welton with the Salvation Army. “As it gets colder, it triggers another. Now we're at Stage 3 which is going to be below 32 degrees. It's an all out emergency to get everyone we can off the street.”

The Salvation Army expects more than 400 people to show up at its downtown shelter Friday night.Just next door, The Austin Resource Center for the Homeless is also full. More than 200 people will stay there Friday night. Several downtown churches and recreation facilities will open their doors during the hard freeze to temporarily provide shelter and a hot meal.

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