Blast of arctic cold weather comes to New York City

The New York City Emergency Management Department and Health Department are urging New Yorkers to prepare for extremely cold weather over the next few days.

An arctic air mass accompanied by gusty winds with speeds up to 40 mph moved into the New York City area Friday, bringing frigid temperatures heading into the weekend.

"With the arctic blast affecting our area over the next few days, it is imperative that New Yorkers take the necessary precautions to stay warm," said NYC Emergency Management Commissioner Deanne Criswell. "Stay indoors as much as possible and bundle up if you have to go out. Remember to virtually check in on your friends, family, or neighbors who may be most vulnerable to the extreme cold."

Temperatures will only warm slightly into the mid-20s on Friday, with wind chills remaining in the single digits through the entire day into late Saturday morning.

Temperatures will return to the low 30s by Sunday afternoon but then the region could get a blast of snow.

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"The weather heading our way is dangerous, but it presents a particular risk to people experiencing homelessness or who use drugs or alcohol and may become incapacitated outdoors," said Health Commissioner Dr. Dave A. Chokshi. "We want New Yorkers to stay safe so please remain inside as much as possible. If you do go outdoors, layer up and wear a face covering. Call 311 if your heat at home isn’t working. New Yorkers should also call 311 if they see someone outdoors who appears to be experiencing homelessness."

The city also provided a list of general cold weather tips:

  • During cold weather, wear dry, warm clothing and cover exposed skin. Keep fingertips, earlobes, and noses covered. Wear a hat, hood, scarf, and gloves. Stay alert for signs of hypothermia, like intense shivering or dizziness, and anyone who experiences these symptoms should seek medical attention or call 911.
  • Check on family, friends and neighbors who may need help in cold weather — especially older adults or people with disabilities — to make sure they are safe inside and have heat.
  • Immediately tell your building superintendent, property manager or owner if you do not have heat. Call 311 if the problem is not fixed quickly and go to a warm place, such as a friend or family member’s home (while maintaining proper physical distance and wearing a face mask). If you stay at home, wear layers of clothing.
  • Eat. Food provides your body with energy to produce heat and drinking helps you avoid dehydration.