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City Prepares for Extreme Cold

Post Date:01/29/2019 9:18 AM

With forecasts calling for extremely dangerous cold this week, the City of Wood Dale encourages residents to remain indoors as much as possible.

Effective at 6 pm on Tuesday evening, the National Weather Service has issued a wind chill warning with temperatures expected to reach up to 30 degrees below zero and wind chills at 50-60 degrees below zero. During these extreme conditions, frostbite can occur in as little as five minutes.

City Hall will be open as a 24-hour warming center beginning Tuesday at 6 pm through Thursday evening. The City's Metra Station will also be open 24 hours.

We encourage you to refrain from non-essential driving and to check on vulnerable neighbors. Please contact the Wood Dale Police Department if you are aware of residents requiring assistance. Dial 911 for emergencies or (630) 766-2060 for additional information. For public works, please call  (630) 350-3530.

Prevent Freezing Pipes
- Be sure that all exterior vents in crawl spaces are closed.
- Open cabinet and closet doors where there are water pipes to allow warm air in.
- Trickle your faucets that are housed on exterior walls.
- Locate your water shut-off valves in case of emergency.

If frozen pipes occur, turn off the water at the main shut-off and use a hair dryer to slowly thaw the pipe. Do not use heat guns. 

Keeping Your Home Warm
- Raise the temperature in your home 2-4 degrees as soon as possible.
- Implement a hold mode on programmable thermostats. 
- Replace your furnace filter.
- Keep your doors and garage door closed.
- Clear obstructions to radiators and vents.

If you have a 90%+ furnace and boiler: You must keep the intake and exhaust clear of ice and snow. During these cold temperatures, ice can build up. A 90%+ furnace and boiler have 2 white PVC pipes; an exhaust pipe and an intake pipe that are generally on the side or back of your home. In some instances, they are on your roof, do NOT go on your roof to clear the pipe.

Your heating system was not designed to accommodate the cold temperatures we are expecting. It may take up to a week for the temperature to return to normal in your home. A 10 degree or more drop is possible during the next few days.

To help minimize temperature loss you can boil water, make soup, or stews; they help introduce humidity and warmer temperatures into your home. DO NOT USE YOUR OVEN or a GRILL TO HEAT YOUR HOME.

Cold Weather Precautions

- Hydrate - Drinks with caffeine, sugar and alcohol take longer for your body to absorb. Water is usually the best choice.
- People should be aware of the amount and intensity of their physical activity, both indoors and out. Cold weather puts additional strain on the body, especially the heart.
- If you have to go outside, wear appropriate clothing that will adequately insulate you from the cold and provide protection from the wind.
- Never leave children or pets alone in vehicles. Temperatures in vehicles can drop rapidly.
- Pets can be greatly affected by the cold and should not be exposed longer than they have to be.
- Test carbon monoxide detectors for proper operation and battery life.