January 21, 2019


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Newark, NJ – January 20, 2019 – Mayor Ras J. Baraka and Department of Health and Community Wellness Director Dr. Mark Wade announced that “Code Blue” continues to remain in effect through Monday, January 21, due to the extreme cold weather. A wind chill advisory is in effect and temperatures are expected to drop overnight and reach as low as 9°F, with a real feel of -9°F Monday morning.

Code Blue is called whenever temperatures reach 25°F or lower without precipitation or 32°F or lower with precipitation. For more information on shelter locations, please visit City of Newark website: or call: (609) 439-5210.

“We are facing frigid cold weather,” said Mayor Baraka. I, along with the Director of Health and Community Wellness Dr. Wade, strongly advise residents and visitors to stay indoors if possible.”

In addition, Mayor Baraka reminded residents of the hazards of cold weather. “If you do need to go out, several layers of warm clothing and protection against moisture and wind are important, even though weather may not seem to threaten cold injury. Gloves and socks should be kept as dry as possible. Insulated boots that do not obstruct circulation are essential in very cold weather. Warm head covering is particularly important, since 30 percent of heat loss is from the head,” he said.

The City offers the following tips on keeping homes safe and coping with extreme winter weather:

·         Keep the house heated to a minimum of 68 degrees. The temperatures inside the walls where the pipes are located is substantially colder than the walls themselves. A temperature lower than 68 degrees will not keep the inside walls from freezing.

·         Watch for ice dams near gutter downspouts. Keep gutters free of leaves and debris so that melting snow and ice can flow freely. Ice dams can cause water to build up and seep into your house.

·         Open hot and cold faucets enough to let them drip slowly. Keeping water moving within the pipes will prevent them from freezing.

·         Check heating units. Poorly operating or damaged heating units can release carbon monoxide gas. Test carbon monoxide detectors for proper operation and battery life.

·         Watch for signs of frostbite, which include loss of feeling or pale appearance of fingers, toes or face.

·         Check on family, friends and neighbors who are at risk and may need additional assistance.

·         Watch pets closely and keep them indoors when possible. Animals can suffer from hypothermia, frostbite and other cold weather injuries.

·         For fire safety use flashlights, instead of candles.

·         Stay indoors as much as possible.

·         Check all windows and doors for drafts. Place plastic if you feel a draft.

·         Do not leave space heaters unattended.

·         Do not use generators indoors.

·         It is illegal to use kerosene heaters indoors.

·         Keep anything that can burn at least three feet away from heating equipment, like the furnace, fireplace, wood stove, or portable space heater.

·         Never use your oven to heat your home.

·         Remember to turn portable heaters off when leaving the room or going to bed.

·         Avoid carbon monoxide poisoning by checking and cleaning your furnace and chimney regularly and ensure you have proper ventilation and the exhaust pipe is free of debris.

Please call the Department of Public Safety at (973) 733-6000 for all non-emergency weather-related emergencies. As always, dial 911 for emergencies. To contact PSE&G, please call their customer service line at: 1-800-436-7734.