Torontonians are being warned to bundle up, with temperatures plunging Friday night and an extremely cold weather warning being issued for the city.
The city reached its highest point on Friday of -2 C in the early morning, but by evening the temperature had dropped to -15 C, and it feels a lot colder with the wind chill.
“With temperatures dropping rapidly during the day today, the wind chill is forecast to be around -30 overnight,” Environment Canada said in a statement.
“A reprieve from extremely cold conditions is expected to begin Saturday morning.”
The Federal Weather Bureau is reminding people that extreme cold puts everyone at risk.
Residents should watch for symptoms related to the common cold, such as shortness of breath, chest pain, muscle aches and weakness, numbness and color change in fingers and toes, Environment Canada said.
“Dress in layers that you can take off if you get too hot. The outer layer should be wind resistant. Uncovered skin can develop frostbite within minutes, especially at wind chill,” Environment Canada warned.
“If it’s too cold for you to stay outside, it’s too cold for your pet to stay outside.”
City opens new 24-hour emergency shelters
The city of Toronto says it has opened new 24-hour emergency shelters in community centers to help homeless people get out of the cold.
From Friday 4 p.m. there are places available at the following locations:
- Warden Hilltop Community Center, 25 Mendelssohn St.
- Masaryk-Cowan Community Center, 220 Cowan Ave.
“These two locations will be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week and provide up to 89 additional physically remote spaces to provide vulnerable people and potentially homeless people with a safe and welcoming place for meals, rest and assistance connecting with important people. wrap-around support such as mental and physical health care,” said a statement from the city.
Community center space became available after regulations, introduced by the county on Jan. 5, resulted in the cancellation of indoor sports and recreation programs.
While temporary, the spaces at these sites will remain in use until further notice, but the need for the sites will be continuously assessed with the city’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC), the city said.
With the current warning of extremely cold weather, the city’s four warming centers are also open. They are located at:
- 129 Pieterstraat
- 5800 Yonge Street.
- Exhibition Site, Better Living Center, 195 Princes’ Blvd.
A fourth warming center will be activated at 1684 Queen Street East, the city said. It will temporarily replace the heating center normally located in the Scarborough Civic Centre, which is currently unavailable due to construction work.