Emergency Information

​Winter weather tips

​Preparing and actively responding to Winter Storm Diego

Winter Storm Diego moved through the Charlotte region this weekend. Check back for updated city service impacts and winter weather safety and preparedness tips.

​Service Updates

The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Government Center will open to the public Tuesday at 10 a.m. City Council committee meetings will continue as scheduled.

The storm has moved out, but refreezing of precipitation on roadways is possible.

Solid Waste Services will operate on a two-hour delay tomorrow, Tuesday, December 11. We are asking residents to put their garbage and recycling carts at the curb and leave them there until collected. Residents who have scheduled bulky items for collection this week should also put those curbside for collection. Yard waste collection is suspended this week. For Solid Waste collection updates delivered directly to your phone, please text CLTSWS to 245-87.

The only remaining major road blocked by downed trees is the 8500 block of Harrisburg Road.

Service Updates

 

City of Charlotte offices will be CLOSED on Monday, Dec. 10. City Council committee and business meetings are canceled and will be postponed to a later date.

  • ​The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Government Center will open to the public Monday at 10 a.m., with the City Council committee and business meetings continuing as scheduled.​
  • While some areas of Charlotte may experience precipitation this morning, road temperatures aren't expected to fall below freezing today. 
  • Total accumulation from Winter Storm Diego varied greatly by location: areas north of Uptown were hit harder than areas south of Uptown.
  • Because of road conditions on secondary roads, Solid Waste Services will not operate Monday. The community can receive service updates by texting CLTSWS to 245-87.
  • The LYNX Blue Line is operating on a normal schedule today, while service on the Gold Line (streetcar) remains suspended.
  • City tree crews received additional calls for service overnight, with 12 major roads now blocked:
    • Carmel and Colony (use Quail Hollow Road, Sharon View Road as alternate routes)

    • 3000 block of McKee Road (use Tilley Morris Road as an alternate route)

    • Nations Ford Road and Deanna Lane (use Old Pineville Road and South Tryon Road as alternate routes)

    • 2400 block of Oaklawn Avenue (use Atando Avenue as an alternate route)

    • 8200 block of Park Road (use Quail Hollow and South Boulevard as alternate routes)

    • Plaza Road Extension and WT Harris Boulevard (use Rocky River, Grier Road and Milton Road as alternate routes)

    • Providence Road at Colonial (use Queens Road and Kings Drive as alternate routes)

    • 2600 block of Providence Road (use Sharon Road and Randolph Road as alternate routes)

    • South Wendover Road and South Canterbury Road (use Sharon Amity as an alternate route)

    • Sharon and Colony (use Fairview Road, Providence Road and Park Road as alternate routes)

    • Ideal Way and South Boulevard (use East Boulevard and Scaleybark as alternate routes)

    • 700 block of Eastway (use Sugar Creek Road as an alternate route)

​Specific hazard information - Winter weather advisory

A Winter Weather Advisory is issued when wintry weather is expected. Light amounts of wintry precipitation or patchy blowing snow will cause slick conditions and could affect travel if precautions are not taken. Exercise caution.

When winter weather does impact the area, check here for updates and subscribe to receive email or text alerts.

​Prepare yourself, your family, and your neighbors:

  • To begin preparing, you should build an emergency kit and make a family communications plan.
  • Make sure you have a cell phone with an emergency charging option (car, solar, hand crank, etc.) in case of a power failure.
  • For those who depend on electricity to operate medical equipment, make alternate arrangements in case of power outage for an extended period of time.
  • Plan to check on elderly/disabled relatives and neighbors.
  • Plan to bring pets inside.
  • Know where the manual release lever of your electric garage door opener is located and how to operate it in case you lose power.
  • Fill a gallon container with water and place them in your freezer to help keep food cold.  

Prepare your home:

  • Make sure your home is well insulated and that you have weather stripping around your doors and window sills to keep warm air inside.
  • Make sure you have a working carbon monoxide detector.
  • Keep fire extinguishers on hand, and make sure everyone in your house knows how to use them. House fires pose an additional risk during cold weather! More people turn to alternate heating sources without taking the necessary precautions.
  • Learn how to shut off water valves in case pipes burst.

Prepare your vehicles:

  • Fully winterize your vehicle. Have a mechanic check antifreeze, brakes, heater and defroster, tires, and windshield wipers to ensure they are in good shape. Keep your gas tank at least half full.
  • Keep an extra emergency kit specifically created for your car. Include the basic essentials along with a portable cell phone charger, ice scraper, extra blanket, sand for traction, and jumper cables.
Dont Forget Your Pets

​Driving in Winter Weather:

If you must travel, the North Carolina Highway Patrol gives the warnings below:

  • Reduce your speed. Driving at the regular speed limit will lower your chances to control the car if you begin to slide.
  • Leave plenty of room between you and other vehicles.
  • Bridges and overpasses collect ice first. Approach them with a lot of caution. Do not push your brakes while on the bridge.
  • If you do begin to slide, take your foot off the gas. Turn the steering wheel IN THE DIRECTION OF THE SLIDE. Do NOT push the brakes as that will cause further loss of control of the car.

If you become trapped in your car:

  • Pull off the highway. Stay calm and stay inside your vehicle. At night, turn on the inside dome light, so work and rescue crews can see you.
  • Set your directional lights to “flashing” and hang a cloth or distress flag from the radio aerial or window.
  • In a rural or wilderness area, put a large cloth over the snow to get rescue crews who may be looking at the area by airplane to see you.
  • Do not go out on foot unless you can see a building close by where you know you can take shelter.
  • If you run the engine to keep warm, open a window a little bit for air. This will keep you safe from possible carbon monoxide poisoning. When you can, clear away snow from the exhaust pipe.
  • Exercise to keep body heat, but try not to do too much. In extreme cold, use road maps, seat covers, and floor mats for insulation. Huddle with passengers and use your coat as a blanket.
  • Never let everyone in the car sleep at once. One person should stay awake to look for rescue crews.
  • Be careful not to use battery power. Balance electrical energy needs – the use of lights, heat, and radio – with your supply.

​Cold Related Illness

Frostbite is a serious condition that’s caused by exposure to extremely cold temperatures.

Signs include:

  • A white or grayish-yellow skin area
  • Skin that feels unusually firm or waxy
  • Numbness

If you detect symptoms of frostbite, seek medical care.

Hypothermia, or abnormally low body temperature, is a dangerous condition that can occur when a person is exposed to extremely cold temperatures.

Hypothermia is caused by prolonged exposure to very cold temperatures. When exposed to cold temperatures, your body begins to lose heat faster than it’s produced. Lengthy exposures will eventually use up your body’s stored energy, which leads to lower body temperature.


Warning signs include:

  • Adults: shivering, exhaustion, confusion, fumbling hands, memory loss, slurred speech, and drowsiness.
  • Infants: bright red, cold skin, very low energy.

If you notice any signs, take the person’s temperature. If it is below 95ᵒF, the situation is an emergency – get medical attention immediately.

​Helpful information

Twitter accounts

@CLTgov

City of C​harlotte​​​

@MeckCounty

Mecklenburg County​​​

@NWS

National Weather Service​​​

@NWSGSP

National Weather Service- Greenville/Spartanburg​​​

@NOAA

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration​​​

@NCEMergency

NC Emergency Management​​​

@fema

FEMA​​​

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