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Arctic cold weather hits the Pacific Northwest
by James Daniels - The Oregon Herald
  Sunday December 6, 2009 - 10:17 AM
 
PORTLAND, Oregon - Frosty temperatures covered the Portland metro area this weekend as waves of cold air rolled over the Northwest.The first in a series of cold-weather systems arrived Friday night. Snow is not expected, but there is a chance of flurries in the northern valleys and a slight chance of measurable snow in the Cascades. Temperatures will stay below freezing in the Willamette Valley and Clark County today and Monday. Overnight temperatures will drop as easterly winds increase. Wind chill values are forecast to be in the single digits, according to the National Weather Service. Wind gusts of up to 50 mph are are expected in the Columbia River Gorge. The cold air is forecast to stay until at least Tuesday.

Preparing Homes For Cold Weather The Portland Water Bureau is offering these tips to help people prepare for the cold weather:


Set the furnace on a low setting if the house will be empty for several days. This might not prevent freezing pipes, but it can help.

Let a slight stream of water run when temperatures drop below freezing. Faucets farthest from the street should be left running. Use cold water to avoid gas or electric heating charges.

Caulk around pipes where they enter the house and close all foundation vents. Cut wood or foam blocks to fill vent openings then slide them into the vents. Open the vents again in the spring to prevent dry rot.

Protect outside pipes and faucets. Consider shutting off outside faucet valves and draining them for the winter.

Outside faucet valves can also be can wrapped in hose bibs with insulation. Use newspaper or rags covered with plastic, fiberglass or molded foam-insulating covers (available at hardware stores) to wrap the faucet.

Disconnect all garden hoses and drain in-ground irrigation systems according to manufacturer's instructions.

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