Don’t let the mild-ish morning temperatures fool you.
It’s going to be cold tonight.
So cold in fact, the City of Toronto has issued an Extreme Cold Weather Alert that will be in effect until further notice.
According to the city, Extreme Cold Weather Alerts are issued when the temperature is forecast to reach -15ºC or colder, or when the wind chill is forecast to reach -20ºC or colder.
Extreme Cold Weather Alerts may also be issued when the forecast includes factors that increase the impact of cold weather on health, including precipitation, low daytime temperatures, or several days and nights of cold weather in a row.
Environment Canada has forecasted that Toronto will see some flurries tonight, with temperatures falling to -12°C this evening, but it will feel more like -17°C with the windchill overnight.
The city is encouraging members of the public to take the following precautions:
- Check the weather report before going outside.
- Dress in layers, making sure your outer layer is windproof, and cover exposed skin.
- Wear a hat, warm mittens or gloves, and warm boots.
- Stay dry. Your risk of hypothermia is much greater if you are wet.
- Choose wool or synthetic fabrics for your clothes instead of cotton, because cotton stops keeping you warm once it gets wet.
- Seek shelter if you normally spend long periods outside. Depending on the wind chill, exposed skin can freeze in minutes.
- Drink warm fluids, other than alcohol.
- Warm-up by taking regular breaks in heated buildings when enjoying winter activities outside.
- Consider rescheduling outdoor activities, or limiting time outdoors, during colder temperatures, especially if it’s windy.
- Heat your home to at least 21 degrees Celsius if infants or elderly people are present.
- Call or visit vulnerable friends, neighbours and family to ensure they are not experiencing any difficulties related to the weather.
The city is reminding the public that if you see a vulnerable person that requires street outreach assistance to call 311. If it’s an emergency, you should call 911.
A warming centre is open at Metro Hall by 7 pm the day an alert is called, and remains open continuously until noon on the day an alert is terminated.