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Posted on: January 10, 2024

Riley County prepares for extreme cold

icy blue background with text "caution extreme cold"

(Riley County, KS – January 10, 2024) The National Weather Service Forecast calls for extremely cold temperatures in Riley County starting Thursday night, January 11th and continuing through at least Tuesday morning, January 16th. Strong winds are expected along with possible snow accumulation. Wind chill temperatures could drop as low as 30 degrees below zero, creating hazardous conditions for both people and animals. 

To stay safe during extreme cold, people are advised to limit time outdoors, dress in several layers of loose, warm clothing, and watch for signs of frostbite and hypothermia. Pets should be kept indoors except for brief periods and may need extra food and water. Ranchers are advised to ensure adequate shelter for livestock that is well-insulated, provide plenty of fresh water and extra feed, and monitor for signs of distress.

“During extreme cold weather, prioritize safety by layering clothing, limiting time outdoors, and reaching out to neighbors, friends, and family to ask for or offer help,” advises Riley County Emergency Management Director Russel Stukey. 

In the event of a large-scale emergency during the extreme cold, such as a widespread power or natural gas outage, Riley County Emergency Management officials will coordinate with area agencies to open a group shelter if needed. 

“The best time to prepare for emergencies is before they happen. Create an emergency plan and make sure all your family members are aware of what to do and how to stay safe. It’s also a good idea to have a winter weather emergency kit in your vehicle so you can stay warm even if you encounter mechanical problems or become stranded,” Stukey explains.

Anyone experiencing an emergency should call 911.

Additional Information

Warming shelter locations in Riley County

Local forecast information from the National Weather Service

Winter emergency supply kit information from the National Weather Service

Cold weather safety advice from CDC

Pet care advice from the Kansas State University School of Veterinary Medicine

Livestock care advice from the Riley County K-State Research and Extension Office

Low Income Energy Assistance Program (LIEAP) through the Kansas Department of Children and Families

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