A cold emergency is in effect in Boston Friday through Sunday as the city braces for frigid temperatures and wind chills below 0, Mayor Michelle Wu's office said Wednesday.
Wind chills will begin to drop to dangerous levels late Friday.
"Boston is moving quickly to ensure that everyone is protected from the intense cold weather that will start Friday and last through the weekend. I want to thank the many city teams who have already begun preparations and will be responding to this weekend’s brutal cold weather,” Wu said in a statement. “I urge all Boston residents to take precautions, stay warm and safe, and check on your neighbors during this cold emergency.”
Residents are urged to check on those at risk, including older adults, people with disabilities and those experiencing homelessness. Wind chills are forecast to reach as low as -21 degrees Friday and -27 degrees on Saturday.
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If you see someone experiencing homelessness out on the streets or sleeping in a car, you are asked to call 911.
The Boston Public Library and its branches will be open during their normal hours. The Southampton Street Shelter for men over 18 years of age and Woods Mullen Shelter for women over 18 years of age are open 24/7. Anyone with a non-violent restriction may come in during the emergency. Pine Street Inn’s mobile outreach vehicles will also be out on the street with extended hours.
The Engagement Center on Atkinson Street will also be open from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Additionally, Boston Centers for Youth and Families (BCYF) locations will act as warming centers. A list of locations is below - centers will be open during their regular operating hours.
Additionally, Gov. Maura Healey decided to open South Station as a warming center overnight.
“I think it’s a good thing, because I was in a shelter last night and it wasn’t a good thing,” Darrin Gauthreaux, who’s experiencing homelessness, said.
The normal hours for South Station are from 5 a.m. until midnight, seven days a week.
“We talked to the private security company, and you saw the garbage bags are off. They’re not locking the doors that way. I’m going to be clear that if we face extreme weather, we’re going to allow people to stay there overnight. it’s a matter of basic humanity in my view,” Gov. Healey said during a GBH radio broadcast on Tuesday.
A local advocate for the homeless spoke with NBC10 Boston and described the overnight opening of South Station during extreme weather as part of a “band-aid effect.”
“The issue is we have individuals that are in the middle of a crisis, individuals that are unhoused that do not have the appropriate medical care,” Yahaira Lopez, co-founder or South End - Roxbury Community Partnership, said.
|Address||Hours of Operation|
(may change summer/school vacations)
|BCYF Blackstone||50 W. Brookline St. Boston 02118||M, 1-9pm, Tu-F, 11am-9pm, Sa 9am-5pm|
|BCYF Charlestown||255 Medford St. Charlestown 02129||M-F 1-9pm|
|BCYF Clougherty Pool||331 Bunker Hill St. Charlestown 02129||Closed for renovation|
|BCYF Condon||200 D St. So. Boston 02127||M-F 11am-9pm, Sa 9am-5pm|
|BCYF Curley||Programming at Walsh Gym|
533 E Broadway, Boston, MA 02127
|BCYF Curtis Hall||20 South St. Jamaica Plain 02130||M-F, 7am-9pm, Sa 9am-5pm|
|BCYF Draper Pool||5279 Washington St. W. Roxbury 02132||Closed for renovation|
|BCYF Flaherty Pool||160 Florence St. Roslindale 02131||M, 7am-3pm, Tu-F 5:30am-9pm, Sa 7am-3pm|
|BCYF Gallivan||61 Woodruff Way Mattapan 02126||M-F 9am-9pm, Sa 9am-5pm|
|BCYF Golden Age||382 Main St. Charlestown 02129||M-F 8am-4pm|
|BCYF Grove Hall||51 Geneva Ave. Dorchester 02121||M-F 8am-4pm|
|BCYF Hennigan||200 Heath St. Jamaica Plain 02130||M-F 1-8:30pm|
|BCYF Holland||85 Olney St. Dorchester 02121||M-F 11am-9pm, Sa 9am-5pm|
|BCYF Hyde Park||1179 River St. Hyde Park, 02136||M-F 7am-9pm, Sa 9am-5pm|
|BCYF Jackson/Mann||500 Cambridge St. Allston 02134||M-F 7am-9:30pm, Sa 9am-5pm|
|BCYF Leahy/Holloran||1 Worrell St. Dorchester 02122||M-F 1-9pm, Sa 9am-5pm|
|BCYF Marshall||35 Westville St. Dorchester 02124||M-F 1-9pm|
|BCYF Mason Pool||159 Norfolk Ave. Roxbury 02119||Tu-F 6:00am-8:30pm, Sa 9am-5pm|
|BCYF Mattahunt||100 Hebron St. Mattapan 02126||Closed for renovation|
|BCYF Menino||125 Brookway Rd. Roslindale 02131||M-F 7am-9pm, Sa 9am-5pm|
|BCYF Mildred Avenue||5 Mildred Ave. Mattapan 02126||M-F 1-9pm, Sa 9am-5pm|
|BCYF Mirabella Pool||475 Commercial St. Boston 02113||Summer: W-Su 11am-7pm|
|BCYF Nazzaro||30 North Bennet St. Boston 02113||M-F 9am-9pm|
|BCYF Ohrenberger||175 W. Boundary Rd. W. Roxbury 02132||M-F 1-9pm|
|BCYF Paris Street||112 Paris St. E. Boston 02128||M-F 8:30am-8:30pm, Sa 11am-7pm|
|BCYF Paris St. Pool||113 Paris St. E. Boston 02128||Closed for renovation|
|BCYF Perkins||155 Talbot Ave. Dorchester 02124||M-F 9am-9pm, Sa 9am-5pm|
|BCYF Pino||86 Boardman St. E. Boston 02128||M-F 8am-9pm, Sa 8am-4pm|
|BCYF Quincy||885 Washington St. Boston 02111||M-F 11am-9pm, 9am-5pm|
|BCYF Roche||1716 Centre St. W. Roxbury 02132||M-F 8am-8pm|
|BCYF Roslindale||6 Cummins Hwy. Roslindale 02131||M-F 9am-9pm|
|BCYF Shelburne||2730 Washington St. Roxbury 02119||M-F 7am-9pm, Sa 9am-5pm|
|BCYF Tobin||1481 Tremont St. Boston 02120||M-F 8am-9pm, Sa 9am-5pm|
|BCYF Tynan||650 East Fourth St. So. Boston 02127||M-F 11am-9pm|
|BCYF Vine Street||339 Dudley St. Roxbury 02118||M-F 7am-9pm, Sa 9am-5pm|
More on the cold
Cold safety information
This is dangerous, life-threatening cold. The city offers the following tips to stay safe:
Dress for the weather:
- Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, residents are required to wear face coverings in all indoor public places.
- Wear several layers of loose-fitting, lightweight, warm clothing rather than one layer of heavy clothing.
- Outer garments should be tightly woven and water repellent.
- Wear mittens over gloves; layering works for your hands as well.
- Always wear a hat and cover your mouth with a scarf to protect your lungs.
- Dress children warmly and set reasonable time limits on outdoor play.
- Restrict infants' outdoor exposure when it is colder than 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
Watch for signs of frostbite:
- Signs of frostbite include loss of feeling and white or pale appearance in extremities such as fingers, toes, ear lobes, and the tip of the nose. If symptoms are detected, get medical help immediately.
Watch for signs of hypothermia:
- These include uncontrollable shivering, memory loss, disorientation, incoherence, slurred speech, drowsiness and apparent exhaustion. If you or someone you know shows any of these symptoms, contact a healthcare provider immediately. If symptoms are severe, call 911.
- Never heat your home using charcoal or gas grill, oven, or other products not specifically designed as a heater. These can cause a fire or produce dangerous levels of carbon monoxide very quickly.
- Have your heating system cleaned and checked annually.
- Install and maintain smoke and carbon monoxide detectors on every level of your home. Carbon monoxide is an invisible gas produced whenever any fuel is burned. Common sources include oil or gas furnaces, water heaters, fireplaces, stoves, and some space heaters. It has no smell, taste, or color. It is poisonous and can be deadly.
- Carbon monoxide symptoms can be similar to other illnesses, including headache, dizziness, and weakness. If multiple people within a residence experience sudden onset of such symptoms, that can be a warning sign of possible carbon monoxide poisoning.
- Keep space heaters at least 3 feet from anything that can burn, including people.
- Space heaters should be turned off and unplugged when you leave the room, or go to bed.