NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Officials are urging people to bundle up and stay warm against the bitter cold as frigid temperatures are expected to last until the New Year.
Highs Tuesday were in the upper 20s to low 30s, but it felt more like the teens. The rest of the week will be even colder, with daytime temperatures reaching only into the teens and 20s with lows dropping into the single digits in some spots.
“With an arctic chill in our area through New Year’s weekend, make sure you bundle up outside and wear a hat, scarf and gloves,” New York City Emergency Management Commissioner Joseph Esposito said in a statement. “Stay indoors as such as possible, and help others to stay safe by checking on elderly family members, neighbors and people with increased health risks.”
The city said by late Tuesday afternoon, it received 989 311 calls for no heat or hot water.
As CBS2’s Jessica Borg reported, many still braved the cold Tuesday.
“The wind is the worst part,” Bensonhurst resident Stephanie Sanjose told CBS2’s Marc Liverman. “You can’t do anything about it on your face.”
“Just move quick, just move fast you won’t think about it as much,” Brooklyn resident Carl S. said.
“Keep thermals on and make sure you have more than one coat, sweater, scarf, gloves, everything,” said Coney Island resident Doreen.
Later on, walking through Times Square Tuesday night, it was a sea of people layered up.
“I have compression pants, long johns and pants on,” one man said.
“I have my three pants, my two jackets, two turtlenecks,” said Hana Curio who works a stand outside selling cold weather items such as hats and scarves.
“A scarf is essential. That’s really where you lose quite a bit of heat, and doing multiple wraps around your neck so you help to insulate yourself,” said Dr. Robert Glatter of Northwell Health Lenox Hill Hospital.
Glatter also warned that those with the greatest risk are children, the elderly and people who work outside.
“Moisture is one of the problems that causes hypothermia, so if you’re wearing wet clothes, you’ve got to remove them immediately,” he said. “Anyone who is shivering; showing confusion, those are the early signs of hypothermia.”
The winter blast did not scare off Patricia and Richard Lyons, who came from Ireland. They plan to watch the ball drop on New Year’s Eve – no matter the wind chill.
“We’re here, you have to do it,” Patricia Lyons said. “It doesn’t matter if we’re freezing and icicles, we’ll do it.”
And Borg did find one couple who were loving the cold snap.
“I’m savoring every each moment of it,” a man said.
In Connecticut, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy has activated the state’s Severe Cold Weather Protocol until Jan. 2, 2018.
“With bitter cold temperatures expected over the next couple of days, we must all take precautions and continue to protect the most vulnerable among us,” Malloy said in a statement. “If anyone is in need of shelter, call 211 to find the nearest available location. I also encourage local communities to consider opening warming centers or other facilities to assist those in need.”
As the temperature drops, officials say stay indoors as much as possible but if you have to go outside, wear dry, warm clothing and cover exposed skin. Keep fingertips, earlobes and noses covered and wear a hat, hood, scarf and gloves.
Prolonged exposure to the cold can lead to hypothermia, frostbite and can worsen existing medical conditions such as heart and lung diseases.
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