FORECAST: Freeze warning issued for Bastrop County beginning at 9 p.m.

Meteorologists have issued a hard freeze warning for Bastrop County and parts of south Central Texas beginning at 9 p.m. Sunday, as temperatures are expected to plummet into the mid-20s when the clock strikes midnight New Year’s Eve.

The freeze warning is in effect through noon Wednesday, meaning sub-freezing tempartures are imminent or highly likely, the National Weather Service said.

Temperatures overnight are forecast in the upper teens to mid-20s and on New Year’s Day in the low to mid-30s, which could lead to bursted plumbing pipes and hypothermia for those outside for extended periods of time, the service said.

“The ambient wind with the temperatures falling into the 20s will cause surfaces to freeze,” weather service meteorologist Steve Smart said. “Certainly exposed surfaces, metal surfaces, bridges, overpasses, poles.”

Freezing rain has been reported to the weather service near Rocky Hill Drive in Cedar Creek just before 6 p.m. Sunday.

In light of the conditions, public safety agencies have advised people to protect themselves, their pets and their plants and have issued the following recommendations:

• Keep tabs on older loved ones and young children, both are vulnerable to hypothermia if exposed to freezing temperatures.

• Bring all pets inside and make sure they have a warm place to sleep

• Cover or bring in plants. During periods of sub-freezing temperatures, crops and other sensitive vegetation may die.

• Let faucets drip to keep pipes from freezing

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