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Cold start for 2015 expected
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The forecast of temperatures dipping slightly below freezing Thursday hasn’t triggered an emergency in San Joaquin County although cold, high winds have.

City Manager Karen McLaughlin noted that the Manteca Fire Department along with Community Emergency Response Team volunteers are prepared to open the Manteca Senior Center overnight for homeless and others without heat to seek shelter if and when the San Joaquin Office of Emergency Services declares an emergency due to low temperatures.

Due to the strong winds and cold daytime  temperatures, the San Joaquin County OES has activated eight warming centers in Stockton, Lodi, and Tracy. They were opened Tuesday. They will also be opened today and Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. but will be closed on New Year’s Day. The warming centers are designed to help those who do not have access to a warm environment, particularly the elderly and young children.

Manteca does not have a designated daytime warming center.

“Whenever the county OES declares an overnight cold emergency, we open the senior center,” McLaughlin noted.

The center is also opened during the summer during heat emergencies for use until early evening.

The National Weather Service noted the strong north winds are unusual for areas around the Delta and could lead to downed trees and power outrages. The weather service noted trees remain drought-stressed and may be more susceptible to being toppled than normal.

Falling trees killed two people in separate incidents in Paradise in the foothills east of Chico.

Temperatures in the San Joaquin Valley will feel like or be in the middle to upper 20s in many parts of the San Joaquin Valley.

The strongest winds were expected to have hit Tuesday night in the valley and Delta averaging 30 to 40 mph with gusts up to 50 mph.

The foothills and Sierra are expected to continue having strong winds this morning with gusts up to 60 mph in the foothills and 80 mph in the Sierra.

To contact Dennis Wyatt, email