City of New Orleans to Activate Arctic Airmass Freeze Plan
Mayor LaToya Cantrell today announced that the City of New Orleans will activate a citywide freeze plan in anticipation of the arctic airmass expected to bring dangerously low temperatures and strong sustained winds beginning Thursday, Dec. 22 until Monday, Dec. 26. Representatives from City departments and local and state agencies were on hand to discuss preparations underway and provide necessary tips to ensure the safety of residents during this weather event. The National Weather Service predicts “feels like” temperatures will reach into the mid-20s south of Lake Pontchartrain. Sustained winds are expected to reach 30 miles per hour, and in some areas possibly 50 miles per hour, through Saturday afternoon.
“My administration has been working since Monday to do everything we can to protect our people, especially our most vulnerable, and I urge all residents to take this severe winter weather event seriously,” said Mayor LaToya Cantrell. “Temperatures will drop as much as 30 degrees overnight Thursday in just a matter of hours. Please remember to protect yourself, your pets and your property, and check on your elderly and disabled neighbors to ensure everyone’s safety. We understand that families have holiday plans for the weekend, but I must encourage you to exercise extreme caution when leaving your homes by layering up and staying alert on the road.”
This week, Mayor Cantrell signed a State of Emergency Declaration in anticipation of the forecasted freezing conditions. Residents should be prepared to take action to protect the “Four P’s” – people, pets, pipes, and plants. Individual preparations should be completed before Thursday evening.
Entergy New Orleans has announced the suspension of service disconnections through Jan. 2, 2023. Residents can call 1-800-ENTERGY to report outages.
The Sewerage and Water Board of New Orleans (SWBNO) will also suspend shut offs from Friday, Dec. 23 to Monday, Dec. 26. The agency will also monitor freezing conditions and continue to respond to emergencies during the impending winter weather event. Residents are reminded to run the faucet located furthest away from the water meter in a thin trickle to prevent pipes from freezing.
The New Orleans Fire Department (NOFD) reminds residents to practice fire safety when using portable heaters. The New Orleans Emergency Medical Services (EMS) will closely monitor road conditions and continue to respond to emergency calls.
The City of New Orleans Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (NOHSEP) coordinated the use of three New Orleans Recreation Development (NORD) facilities as “overnight warming centers” equipped with emergency generator switch connectors from Thursday at 6 p.m. until Monday at 6 p.m. for unhoused residents.
The following locations will be available:
- Cut Off Recreation Center, 6600 Belgrade St.
- Joe W. Brown Recreation Center, 5601 Read Blvd. (pet friendly)
- Rosenwald Recreation Center, 1120 S. Broad Ave.
The Mayor’s Office of Housing Policy and Community Development (OCD) will monitor the centers nightly capacity and work with the New Orleans Health Department (NOHD), New Orleans Police Department (NOPD) Homeless Unit, Unity of Greater New Orleans, Travelers Aid and the New Orleans Mission outreach teams to encourage homeless individuals to utilize the “overnight warming centers” and emergency shelters. Transporation will be provided if needed.
The following emergency shelters will be available:
- Ozanam Inn, 2239 Poydras St. (accepting men and women)
- The New Orleans Mission, 1130 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd. (accepting men and women)
- Salvation Army, 4526 S. Claiborne Ave. (accepting men and women - entry fees are waived during the weather event)
- New Orleans Women and Children Shelter (accepting families)
- City’s Low Barrier Shelter, 1530 Gravier St. (accepting men and women)
- Concerned Citizens for a Better Algiers, 1409 Nunez St.
- Covenant House, 611 N. Rampart St. (accepting youth ages 16 – 22; will accept a single parent with youth during weather event)
For more information and safety tips, visit nola.ready.gov. To receive up-to-date alerts text NOLAREADY to 77295.