Chicago Fire Department

City Officials Offer Safety Tips Ahead of Frigid Temperatures

Chicago officials are encouraging residents to take extra precautions as bitterly cold temperatures are expected to move in to start the work week.

The city could see record low temperatures in the early stages of the week as a mass of Arctic air plunges southward from Canada. Lows could reach the low-to-mid teens on Tuesday, according to forecast models, and the rest of the week won’t be much better as highs aren’t expected to rebound into the 40s until at least Friday.

The city’s Office of Emergency Management and Communications has issued a series of tips and advisories for residents looking to keep themselves warm during the coming cold snap.

The Chicago Fire Department recommends that residents avoid space heaters whenever possible, but says that if the devices must be used that they be kept at least three feet from anything that can ignite.

If extension cords are used for the devices, the CFD recommends that they be rated for at least 15 amps.

Residents are also urged to check their carbon monoxide detectors, as city ordinance requires the devices to be installed in residences.

Other tips include:

-Avoid unnecessary trips outside. If you must go out, then limit the amount of time you spend outside.

-Wear several layers of loose, warm clothing.

-Keep your head, hands and feet covered when outdoors.

-Stay dry, because moisture can damage the insulating effectiveness of clothing.

-Pay extra attention to your body’s nutritional and health needs. Eat high-energy foods and drink warm beverages to help keep your body warm.

If residents need any type of assistance during the coming cold snap, or need to know the location of their nearest warming center, city agencies are encouraging residents to call 311, or to visit the city’s emergency management website.

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