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CHICAGO (CBS) — With dangerous cold descending on the Chicago area involving subzero air temperatures and wind chills as low as -30, the city will be doing wellbeing checks urges people to get to a warming center if necessary.
First off, if you’re looking for a warm place to go right now, even if it’s after hours, the city encourages you to call 311 so it can connect you with warming centers closest to where you are.
We know that finding a warm place to stay can be struggle for many when conditions are as bad as this. For some people, cold is part of the job.
If you’re watching and reading from indoors, consider yourself lucky – and spare a thought for the men and women who don’t have that option and have to work outside anyway.
CBS 2’s Marie Saavedra found some dutiful Portillo’s workers in the South Loop under who knows how many layers as they still took drive through orders outside.
And speaking of cars, there was no break for valets. The cold didn’t keep people from coming and going from the Drake Hotel – but at least they get some relief in a warm vehicle.
For some, there is no refuge if the heat is hit or miss at home. Chicago’s Office of Emergency Management activated its warming area at the Garfield Community Service Center, 10 S. Kedzie Ave.
It is the only warming center open 24 hours a day, but there are five other community shelters spread across the city, open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. any time it hits freezing or below.
The other centers are:
• The Englewood Community Service Center, 1140 W. 79th St.;
• The Dr. Martin Luther King Community Service Center, 4314 S. Cottage Grove Ave.;
• The North Area Community Center, 845 W. Wilson Ave.;
• The South Chicago Community Service Center, 8650 S. Commercial Ave.;
• The Trina Davila Community Service Center, 4312 W. North Ave.
There are two other instances where calling 311 could prove helpful as we finish out the rest of this particular cold snap. You can call to report any faulty heat issues in your own building, and you can also call if you’re concerned for your neighbors.
The city will be doing wellbeing checks for those who may also be struggling with their heat.
A wind chill advisory is in effect for all of northern Illinois and most of northern Indiana through noon Wednesday.
Temperatures are expected to drop as low as -6° in the city and -15° in the far west suburbs, with wind chills down to between -20° and -35°.
Winds that cold can cause frostbite on exposed skin in as little as 30 minutes.
Source: CBS Chicago