Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Back Into The Deep Freeze

Temperatures are going to be in single digits from today until about noon on Friday, with actual temps predicted to be headed below zero tonight with wind chills in the negative 20s.  We're Chicagoans, we know this is how winter works, but it's not much fun. Help keep an eye out for those who are sleeping rough, and take common sense precautions for yourself. Reiterating a post from last winter:
  • The closest hyperlocal weather reports for Uptown come from Weather Underground and Weatherbug.
  • Especially on Thursday, when the wind chill is predicted to get down into the -20 to -30 range, remember that Uptown has plenty of places that deliver food. If you go that route, be sure to give your delivery person a couple bucks in addition to your normal tip.  He or she's earned it.
  • Landlords are required to provide adequate heat to rental units.  The City requires a minimum temperature of 66 degrees at night and 68 degrees during the day.
  • Limit your pet's time outside.
  • You know the drill:  Leave a faucet in your home dripping to help prevent frozen pipes. Layer your clothes. Avoid prolonged exposure of unprotected skin.
  • In this brutal weather, please keep an eye out for anyone sleeping outside and call 311 and ask for a well-being check. There are still shelter beds available, even in the deep freeze.  City services will come out and try to talk the person into sleeping inside, and at the very least will try to talk them into a warming van for a bit.  If someone is mentally ill or under the influence, they may not realize the consequences of sleeping rough.  18 people have already died this winter from cold exposure.
  • Don't forget about the city's warming centers, one of which is at 845 W Wilson (moved from 4740 N Sheridan).  If someone is in a bad situation and can't make it to a warming center, call 311 and request help.  Police stations, park field houses, and public libraries are all de facto warming centers as well.
  • Last year, Ald. Pawar's office supplied a comprehensive list of how to cope with extreme cold, dealing with your car, your home, space heaters, etc.  You can find it here.

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