Bitter cold wind chills are expected Thursday morning in Middle Georgia.
Macon, Warner Robins and surrounding areas are expected to feel like temperatures in the single digits.
Volunteers for the Daybreak center for the homeless are making plans to shelter folks from the cold overnight at their facility at 174 Walnut St.
“We’re planning to be here once the Salvation Army overflows,” said Sister Elizabeth Greim, the executive director of the day center that also houses a medical clinic.
The Salvation Army men’s lodge expects to quickly fill the 65 beds and floor mats available at the facility between Broadway and Houston Avenue.
“We already have 35 to 40 in beds, then we put the overflow on the floor,” said Charles Pope, men’s shelter director.
Thursday’s morning lows are forecast to plummet down to the teens in Middle Georgia as winds gust to 25 mph.
Parts of North Georgia are likely to see actual temperatures in single digits.
The mercury will struggle to climb above freezing Thursday afternoon in the midstate, even with plenty of sunshine and calmer winds of 5 mph.
Everyone is urged to protect their pets, plants and pipes from the elements.
This frigid Arctic air mass begins filtering in Wednesday, with the coldest air hitting Thursday morning.
These conditions are anticipated to be the coldest since the big freeze last January, which was a few degrees colder than Thursday’s forecasted low of 16 in Macon.
On Jan. 7, 2014, Macon set a record low of 11 degrees, with temperatures staying below freezing most of the day.
Pipes burst all over the state, causing $75 million in damage, according to the Georgia Department of Insurance.
The mercury plunged again the next day to 12 degrees.
Friday’s low is expected to drop to about 20 degrees.
With prolonged periods of freezing temperatures, pipe breaks and property damage are possible.
Insurance Commissioner Ralph Hudgens said people need to pay attention to their insurance coverage.
“Depending on the source of the property damage, you may or may not be covered,” Hudgens said in a news release offering cold weather safety tips.
Pipes breaking inside the house and any resulting water damage is generally covered by a homeowner’s policy.
Broken pipes outside on the property are not covered.
Also, water damage from a main break or other source outside the residence could be classified as a “flood” or “seepage,” which would not be covered under a standard policy, the release stated.
Insurance policies for renters or condominium dwellers usually cover water damage from an upstairs unit. Without insurance, a property owner would have to prove negligence to draw on the liability coverage on a neighbor’s policy.
Hudgens also warned people to use extra caution with home heating devices and make sure space heaters and wood stoves are a safe distance away from bedding and curtains.
To contact writer Liz Fabian, call 744-4303.