Monday, January 21 2013, 08:16 PM CST
Dealing with the Winter Cold
CHAMPAIGN-- 12 degrees around 1:00. Single digits as the afternoon wore on. For the Champaign-Urbana area, Monday's frigid temperatures were in stark contrast to the mid-50s of last week. Doug Quick says, however, that these temperatures just seem colder compared to recent winters. "Last winter we didn't see temperatures fall below 11 degrees the entire winter, maybe that occurred on one or two days. We were keeping overnight lows even into the mid- to upper-teens."
In fact, 2 years ago the temperature on January 21st was 6 degrees below zero. But that is not to say that this cold spell should be taken lightly. Melany Jackson, from C-U At Home, an organization that works to house and support local homeless, says, "Folks really need to be careful in the weather when it's this cold, to avoid hypothermia, to avoid frostbite."
There are several resources available to people in the Champaign-Urbana area who are homeless or just need to get out of the cold; among them Community Elements and the Champaign-Urbana Public Health District. Jackson adds, "There are two shelters in town for men, the Times Center and the Salvation Army. There is an emergency shelter for women and children through Center for Women in Transition. All of those resources are available and they do fill up fast."
And as the lows continue to dip, at least for this week, Quick reminds us that we're not the only ones who need to be careful. "People should take precaution during the overnight period, certainly if you have animals outside, you should make arrangements to at least keep them in warm houses with straw. So if they they are to be kept outside make sure to take special care of those animals."