Extreme Cold

Extreme cold can be defined as temperatures that create a dangerous environment for people or animals. Extreme cold does not have a set temperature range, and what constitutes extreme cold can mean different things to people in different areas. It is important to understand that below-normal temperatures coupled with increases in wind speed can cause heat to leave the body more rapidly. These types of weather conditions may cause serious health concerns in people who are susceptible, including those stranded by inclement weather and people living without housing or in housing with inadequate heating or insulation. 

  1. Preparing for Extreme Cold
  2. Staying Safe During Extreme Cold
  3. Warming Centers

Plan Ahead

  • Prepare your home for cold weather. Install storm windows. Insulate outside walls, attics and crawl spaces. Wrap pipes, especially those near cold outer walls or in attics or crawl spaces. Repair leaks in the roof, around the doors and in the windows. 
  • Have appropriate cold weather clothing available. 
  • If you have a kerosene heater, refuel any heaters outside and remember to keep it at least three feet from flammable objects. 
  • Make sure your fireplace functions properly.
  • Have rock salt and sand on hand for traction on ice. 
  • Fill your gas tank before any extreme cold weather arrives. 
  • Install a smoke detector and a battery-operated carbon monoxide detector.
  • Keep an easy-to-read thermometer inside your home.  
  • If you cannot bring your pets indoors, provide adequate shelter to keep them warm and make sure they have access to unfrozen water. 
  • Prepare your car for winter weather. 
  • Stay informed. Enroll for emergency notifications through your county's emergency management if available, and National Weather Service for your area.