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Montgomery County Issues Cold Emergency Alert; Community Members Urged to Take Precautions



Due to expected overnight temperatures tonight into tomorrow in Montgomery County falling into the single digits with a wind chill of 0 to minus 10 degrees, the Office of Emergency Management and Homeland Security is issuing a Cold Emergency Alert to go into effect tonight at 7:00 pm.

A Cold Emergency Alert, the highest level of extreme temperature alert, is issued for the County when conditions, temperature combined with wind chill are forecasted to be below 20 degrees; and there are other conditions that pose a significant threat to exposed human and animal life. Those may include: wind chill advisories or warnings from the National Weather Service and/or significant snow fall.

At this time, there is a Wind Chill Advisory for Montgomery County in which wind chills are expected to be below -5 degrees at times.

There is always particular concern during periods of extreme cold for children, seniors, homeless individuals and animals. Everyone spending time outside should take necessary precautions against the extreme cold. Frostbite can occur with as little as 30 minutes of exposure to the cold. Anyone being outside should dress in layers of warm clothing and wear a hat. Nearly half of body heat is lost through the head. Cover your mouth to protect your lungs from extreme cold. Mittens, snug at the wrist, are better than gloves. Do not ignore shivering. It’s an important first sign that the body is losing heat. Persistent shivering is a signal to return indoors.

“Exposure to cold temperatures, even for a short time, can carry significant health risks to include hypothermia,” said County Health Officer Dr. Travis Gayles. “All residents should take extra precautions to stay warm, particularly our most vulnerable residents, including elderly and individuals with chronic health conditions such as diabetes and heart disease that may increase their risk of side effects related to cold temperatures.”

  • Neighbors, friends or family members should check on the elderly, especially a senior living alone. Older people are particularly susceptible to hypothermia, even inside their homes and may need assistance.