New Haven officials activate the severe cold weather plan

(WTNH / Josh Scheinblum)

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH)– New Haven City officials are prepared for single digit temperatures over the next few days. They are activating the severe cold weather plan and are monitoring the weather conditions minute to minute inside the emergency operations center.

Emergency Management Deputy Director Rick Fontana said, “I think the shelters will be at absolute full capacity. I think the warming center will be close to full capacity.”

Fontana added, “We use wind-chill factor so if we get any type of wind chill factor that is down in the teens we automatically achieve the cold weather policy.” They are monitoring how many people are staying in the shelters and warming centers. New haven public libraries will serve as daytime warming centers during regular business hours. In addition a night warming center is open at Bethel AME church on Goffe Street.

“We have a capacity of approximately 50 people when the warming center is up and running. Our goal is to open a second one on February first,” Fontana.

New Haven police officers are on the ground making sure people who are outside in the cold have a warm place to go. Fontana said, “We are putting posters up at the train station. We will have the police office out making sure that areas where homeless might congregate in that they understand the risk of this weather and understand that they can go to the warming center.”

Fontana said their goal is to keep everyone safe. “This is going to be a short event but we want to make sure people are listening to our advice and making sure that people remain safe.”

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