SEATTLE - Temperatures are starting to slowly rise, but it is still cold and snow could be on the way.
TheDecemberdeep freeze continuesits grip onthe Northwest as temperatures reach new record lows the second straight day in a row. And it's not quite over yet - signs point to possible snowfalling inareas over the weekend.
We thought temperatures might warm up, and it did a degree or two in some spots, said KING 5 Meteorologist Rich Marriott.
Marriott says Sea-Tac Airport dropped to 16 degrees early Thursday morning, breaking the record of 21 degrees in 1972. The record set at the federal building in downtown Seattle was 18 degrees set in 1919.
Some other Thursday morning temperatures around the state: Pullman 9, Spokane 8, Pasco -1, Wenatchee 3, Vancouver 12, Kelso-Longview 10, Chehalis 10, Parkland 7, Rochester 6, Olympia 7, Bremerton 14 and Bellingham 14.
Marriott says the region will begin to see a very slow warming trend. Overnight Thursday, temperatures will dip again, but not as cold by a couple of degrees. Friday will be partly to mostly sunny as a few clouds move in, bringing with it a chance of flurries near the San Juansand the Bellingham area.Highs should get above freezing almost everywhere.
On Saturday a storm passing to the south will give a chance of flurries to the south Sound and southwestern Washington. No significant accumulations should occur except near Portland, said Marriott.
On Sunday a system passing just to the north will trigger a chance of snow showers mainly from Seattle northward with a rain snow mix to the south. We could see some accumulations of several inches but it is too early for exact numbers, he added.
Marriott said regions up northnear thePuget Sound water andsouth of Seattle will likely see a rain/snow mix that day. Areas about two miles away from the water will see more snow than rain with the possibility of several inches of snow.
Marriott said overnight temperatures will still drop Saturday and Sunday night in the 20s, but he doesn't expect problems with slick roads to be a major issue. However, Marriott does expect slick roads early Monday morning when a stronger storm system moves into the region from the southwest.
There should be increasingly rain showers during the day, except in Whatcom County and along the Hood Canal where there could remain snow showers orfreezing rain, said Marriott. Later Monday night a much stronger front will change everywhere to rain. The rest of the week should be rainy and warmer with warmer temperatures in the mid to upper 40s.
Carbon monoxide death
The cold temperature turned deadly in Portlandafter acouple trying to stay warmin theirhome suffered carbon monoxide poisoning.
They were found by family members who were concerned after not hearing from the couple since Monday.
The man is dead, the woman in critical condition.
Cold weather accidents up
AAA of Washington reports a 20 to 25 percent increase in calls related to cold weather over the past four days. Drivers are encouraged to take extra precautions while on the road.
Wash. fire official warns about lake ice
Eastside Fire and Rescue, serving communities in East King County, is warning residents to be careful about playing on ice-covered ponds or small lakes during the current cold snap.
Eastside spokeswoman Josie Williams warns that's no reason to assume ice in the area is safe to walk on. She notes that a layer of ice is seldom frozen evenly and can be a foot thick in one spot and less than an inch thick in another. And she says falling through ice into frigid water can easily be fatal.
People coping with the cold
Emergency Shelters are filling up and pedestrians anddrivers are preparing for a cold commute outside.
Lisa Murrow normally wears shorts to work. The U.S. Postal Carrier decided to cover up today after walking a few blocks in the sub-freezing temperatures.
Twenty degree temperature and wind chill, she said caused her to put on long pants.
No matter what the thermometer reads, Seattle street crews are hard at work. David Salmon keeps heat packs inside his gloves to keep his hands warm.
They keep you toasty, said Salmon.
Before he leaves home for work, garbage collector Michael Hibbard layers up. He says he just grabs everything he can to cut down on the chill.
Phyllis Brown cranks up the heat at her Wallingford Alterations shop. She moved from Northern Idaho to get away from days like today.
It is not supposed to get this cold in Seattle, she laughed.
Mike Hinshaw says he would rather work in the sunshine and cold rather than in the rain. The mason would like to see it warm up a little.
It would be nice if it got above freezing some point today, he said.
Along a Ballard street, Brandan Pfahl took off his gloves and put on his acoustic guitar. The musician admits that his fingers get all frozen up.
Your guitar strings don't like to stay in tune. So that is a problem, he said.
With the cold snap, several counties have opened up emergency shelters for the homeless:
His Ministry in Auburn
240 Auburn Way South, Suite 1B
Hours of operation: 9 p.m. - 7 a.m.
Crossroads Community Center
16000 NE 10th St.
Hours of operation: 9:30 p.m. - 6:30 a.m.
(Check in and registration from 9:30 a.m. - 1:30 a.m. All clients must vacate the SWS by 6:30 a.m.)
Highlands Neighborhood Community Center
800 Edmonds Ave. NE
Open 8 p.m. to 7 a.m.
4th Ave between James and Cherry Streets
Opens at 9 p.m.
King County Administration Building
500 4th Ave
Opens: 9 PM
3rd and Yesler
Opens at 8 p.m.
Lazarus Day Center
416 2nd Ave.
11 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
For people 50 and up
Kent Lutheran Church
336 2nd Avenue South
Kent, WA 98032-5849
9 p.m. to 7 a.m.
Salvation Army Everett Corps
2525 Rucker Avenue
Opens: 8 p.m. Serves: Men, Women, Families
Meet at Good Shepherd Baptist Church
6915 196th St SW, Lynnwood at 7 p.m.
Individuals will be driven to local churches that are part of the South Snohomish County Emergency Shelter network.
Coffee Oasis , 822 Burwell St.
Spirit of Truth Fellowship, 902 Dekalb St.
First Assembly of God Church, 1517 N. 4th Ave.
9 p.m. to 9 a.m.
Cold weather preparations
King County offers the followingsteps to prepare for cold weather conditions:
- Keep cold weather clothing in your vehicle for road emergencies and extra blankets in your car and home.
- Fill your car s gas tank and keep it at least half full at all times to avoid running out of gas due to unexpected weather-related traffic conditions.
- Wrap or insulate pipes and outdoor faucets to prevent them from freezing.
- Assemble an emergency supply kit for your home, car and work or school, with water and non-perishable food, a flashlight and extra batteries, first aid and hygiene supplies.
- Don t forget about your pet s needs. Sheltering pets from wind and moisture is very important. Wind chill affects pets just like people. Very young and older pets are most susceptible to frostbite and hypothermia. When the temperature drops, make sure pets can go to a warm space, out of the elements.
Visit www.takewinterbystorm.org for an emergency preparedness checklist and other helpful information.