FAIRFIELD — Wrap your exposed pipe and cover some of your more susceptible plants this week – the National Weather Service predicts the area will be hit with the first cold snap of the fall.
Cordelia-area meteorologist Mike Pechner predicts it will be the coldest weather since December 1998, with early morning temperatures dropping into the low 20s or high teens in some colder parts of Fairfield, Suisun City and Green Valley starting Wednesday.
The National Weather Service predicts the first patchy frost of the season will happen Wednesday morning and will see morning temperatures continue to drop with widespread frost through Friday. A chance of showers is predicted Friday.
There was a brief shower Tuesday afternoon in Fairfield, ahead of the cold spell.
Mission Solano plans to provide hot beverages around the clock at the emergency heating center it will open for the homeless and needy population it serves. It is also asking the community for coats, gloves, scarves, caps, socks and blankets to be given out to those who make their way to the shelter.
“On any given night, there are over 1,000 homeless men, women and children on the streets of Solano County,” said Mission Solano CEO Ron Marlette in a press release. “I have instructed my staff to immediately open an emergency heating center at the Community Outreach Center at 740 Travis Blvd. to help provide relief from the bitter cold.”
Solano County Agricultural Commissioner Jim Allan said that just how cold it will get will depend on several factors.
“If there is a cloud cover, it won’t be as cold. If it is clear, it will be quite cold,” Allan said. “The biggest impact will be for people with seedling alfalfa, which they planted just before the rains we had a week ago. The sprouts would be very susceptible to freezing. It is our most at-risk crop.”
Allan added that a cold, early winter would help the rest of the county’s crops, such as plums, apricots, cherries and nuts.
Pechner predicted that Thursday will be the coldest day, as an arctic air mass settles over the area, but it won’t be as cold as previous frosts such as in December 1972, December 1988 or December 1998, which saw three days of low temperatures in the high teens.
Reach Ian Thompson at 427-6976 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/ithompsondr.