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Your Tewksbury Today

UPDATED: Region Braces For 'Big Chill'; Red Cross Offers 10 Tips For Staying Safe

Jan 06, 2015 12:31PM ● By Bill Gilman
The most severe cold spell of the seasons has descended on the Merrimack Valley and with it comes a variety of healthy and safety dangers.

According to the National Weather Service, the temperatures in Tewksbury Wednesday night will drop to as low as minus 5 degrees Farenheit (-5F) with a windchill factor of minus 25-30 (-25-30F) as winds gust to upwards of 33 MPH.
You will start to feel the temperatures plummet Wednesday afternoon, with a windchill of around -15 F at during the evening commute.
The American Red Cross offers these 10 Tips for staying safe in a big chill:

1. Wear layers of lightweight clothing to stay warm. Gloves and a hat will help prevent losing your body heat.

2. Don’t forget your pets - bring them indoors. If they can’t come inside, make sure they have enough shelter to keep them warm and that they can get to unfrozen water.

3. Protect your pipes - run water, even at a trickle, to help prevent your pipes from freezing. Open the kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing. Be sure to move any harmful cleaners and household chemicals out of the reach of children. Keep the garage doors closed if there are water lines in the garage.

4. Keep the thermostat at the same temperature day and night. Your heating bill may be a little higher, but you could avoid a more costly repair job if your pipes freeze and burst.

5. If you are using a space heater, place it on a level, hard surface and keep anything flammable at least three feet away – things such as paper, clothing, bedding, curtains or rugs.

6. Turn off space heaters and make sure fireplace embers are out before leaving the room or going to bed.

7. Never use a stove or oven to heat your home.

8. If you are using a fireplace, use a glass or metal fire screen large enough to catch sparks and rolling logs.

9. Use generators correctly – never operate a generator inside the home, including in the basement or garage.

10. Don’t hook a generator up to the home’s wiring. The safest thing to do is to connect the equipment you want to power directly to the outlets on the generator.

Tewksbury Police are cautioning residents

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