NEW ORLEANS, LA - The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Weather Advisory for parts of Louisiana beginning Thursday evening at 6:00 PM. That advisory includes much of the southwest part of the state which includes areas in and around Baton Rouge, Lafayette, Lake Charles and Alexandria. Snow, sleet or freezing rain could make driving difficult. Another hard freeze is also expected over night.
Around the New Orleans area, Fox 8 meteorologist Bruce Katz says we could be looking at snow flurries mixed with sleet north and west of the city. Katz says these areas includes Baton Rouge, Hammond, Ponchatoula and areas west of Laplace. There is a hard freeze warning in place for the northshore, meaning residents should take all precautions including pipe protection. Residents living on the south shore are under a light freeze warning, and should take precautions to protect pets and plants. Temperatures north of the lake will dip to the low 20's, while areas on the south shore will see a low in the upper 20's.
The GOHSEP Crisis Action Team has been activated and regional coordinators are in contact with local officials to see if any state resources are needed to deal with changing conditions.
"Stay aware of the forecast for your area and listen for possible winter weather notices from your local emergency managers," says GOHSEP Director Kevin Davis. "Please take a moment to make sure you have your game plan in place to protect your family, your homes and your pets."
On Thursday, Governor Bobby Jindal signed an emergency order that will allow for the uninterrupted delivery of propane and heating fuels. The governor declared a state of emergency due to the extreme cold temperatures impacting Louisiana and the rest of the country. Louisiana is a key producer and exporter of propane and heating fuel products. State agencies are now authorized to take appropriate actions to ensure these products can be delivered in Louisiana and other states.