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Arctic blast shutters schools
3 Cold Weather pic1
With the thermometer at 2 degrees, Amicalola Falls showed the effects of the subfreezing weather. - photo by Ryan Coker Dawson Community News

Frigid weather tips

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

• Seek medical attention immediately if you have symptoms of hypothermia, including confusion, dizziness, exhaustion and severe shivering.

• Watch for symptoms of frostbite, including numbness, flushed gray, white, blue or yellow skin discoloration, numbness, or waxy feeling skin.

• 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.

• Avoid frozen pipes. Run water, even at a trickle, to help prevent them 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.

• 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.

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

• If you are using a space heater, place it on a level, hard surface and keep anything flammable - such as paper, clothing, bedding, curtains or rugs - at least three feet away. Turn off space heaters and make sure fireplace embers are out before leaving the room or going to bed.

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

• Use generators correctly. Never operate a generator inside the home, including in the basement or garage.

• 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.

Source: American Red Cross



Due to extreme cold and subzero wind chills moving across the state, the Dawson County Board of Education decided to cancel school Monday and Tuesday.

"We are experiencing the coldest temperatures and wind chill factors in over a decade," said Dawson County School Superintendent Keith Porter. "... Roadways in certain areas had black ice spots Monday morning. This icing, along with the wind chills, made having school unsafe for students and employees. "

With temperatures reaching the low teens on Monday and into the single digits and a wind chill into the negative numbers early Tuesday, Porter said it was just too much of a risk to let students stand outside in the cold.

"The wind chills that are predicted for Tuesday are even more extreme and causes us concern for the safety of students who must stand at bus stops," he said

"Buses and school heating systems will be taxed during this time, and we do not want complications with these necessities to create adverse situations for our students."

The winter weather advisory issued for Monday and Tuesday warned that frostbite and hypothermia were possible if residents weren't protected against with warm clothing.

The cold weather also caused the school board to cancel Tuesday night athletics and extracurricular activities.