Advance Warning System Message - Winter Weather Advisory

Email Body:

Greetings AWS Partners,

The Advance Warning System (AWS) disseminates information to New Yorkers with disabilities and access and functional needs through their service providers. Please share the important information below with your clients and other agencies or individuals to empower them to make informed decisions:

The National Weather Service (NWS) has lifted the citywide blizzard warning as of Tuesday morning, Jan. 27. However, NWS has issued a Winter Weather Advisory for snow and blowing snow, which will be in effect until 6 PM today, Tuesday, Jan. 27. A Winter Weather Advisory means that periods of snow will cause travel difficulties. Be prepared for slippery roads and limited visibilities. Caution is advised while traveling. Changes to city services are described below.

The current forecast calls for additional snowfall accumulation of up to 1 to 2 inches, which will cause snow and blowing snow hazards. Northwest winds will reach speeds of up to 15 to 25 MPH with possible gusts of up to 35 MPH. There is a possibility of limited visibility of one-quarter to one-half mile at times. Temperatures will remain in the lower 20s for rest of today, Tuesday, Jan. 27.

Mayor de Blasio has announced that the travel ban for all NYC roads has been lifted as of 7:30 AM today, Tuesday, Jan. 27. All residents are allowed to travel on NYC roadways. Exercise caution when driving and allow for additional travel time. NYC subway and bus service has resumed with limited service at 9 AM on Jan. 27. A full Sunday schedule began at noon. Expect residual delays. For additional information about MTA subway, railroad, bus, bridge, and tunnel service changes, visit the MTA website. Today, Tuesday, Jan. 27, Access-A-Ride is taking same-day requests though wait times are expected to be longer than normal. Wednesday, Jan. 28th Access-A-Ride will resume regular service. For updates about Access-A-Ride, visit the MTA website or call 311. Please call 911 for any life-threatening issues.

Utility Issues
For power-related issues, call your utility provider:
National Grid 24-hour hotline: 1-718-643-4050
PSEG 24-hour hotline: 1-800-490-0025

Schools are closed today, Tuesday, Jan. 27. Regents exams scheduled for today have been rescheduled for Thursday. Schools will open tomorrow. After-school programs, adult education programs and PSAL activities will resume.

Snow Removal
The Department of Sanitation has 12-hour shifts of 2,400 workers each on duty, with 1,800 collection trucks outfitted with plows (up from usual 1,500) and another 500 salt spreaders, also outfitted with plows. City agencies have dedicated a further 250 pieces of equipment, for a total of 2,550 vehicles now dedicated to the effort. Plowing progress can be followed via the PlowNYC feature at

Emergency Response
911 should only be used in case of emergencies. All other snow related inquiries and reports should be made to 311. FDNY has added 110 additional ambulances to its operations-bringing its total to 380 on duty. The agency is also adding a fifth firefighter to each engine company. More than 500 additional personnel are supporting operations.

Heat and Hot Water
Any tenant lacking heat and hot water should immediately call 311. The Department of Housing Preservation and Development has crews responding.

Homeless Services
Code Blue protocols are in effect. No one seeking shelter in New York City will be denied. Anyone who sees a homeless individual or family out in the cold should call 311 immediately and an outreach team will be dispatched to assist them.

Further Notifications
For information and updates related to weather and travel conditions, visit New Yorkers are also encouraged to sign up for Notify NYC, the City's free emergency notification system. Through Notify NYC, New Yorkers can receive phone calls, text messages, and/or emails alerts about traffic and transit disruptions and other emergencies. To sign up for Notify NYC, call 311, visit, or follow @NotifyNYC on Twitter.

Please inform your clients of the adverse weather conditions and encourage them to alter plans as necessary to stay safe. Please also review the cold weather safety tips below.

Cold weather is also dangerous for pets. The ASPCA� (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals�) advises people to keep cats indoors, especially at night when temperatures drop, and take measures to keep dogs warm, dry and safe from anti-freeze and sidewalk salt. Thoroughly wipe off your dog's paws and stomach when he comes in out of the sleet, snow or ice, as they can ingest salt, anti-freeze or other potentially dangerous chemicals by licking his paws. Paw pads may also become irritated from snow or encrusted ice. Pets should be inside the home year round, but it is especially important during the cold weather. Pets who normally live outdoors should be brought inside as protection against the harsh conditions. Outdoor time for dogs to relieve themselves should be limited, walks should be kept as brief as possible, and animals should always wear proper ID tags. There is no distinct time limit for how long dogs should be outside to go to the bathroom; it depends on the dog (breed, size, age, health conditions etc.).


Tips for Staying Warm

Exposure to cold can cause life-threatening health conditions. Avoid serious conditions, such as frostbite and hypothermia, by keeping warm.

� Wear a hat, hood, or scarf, as most heat is lost through the head.
� Wear layers, as they provide better insulation and warmth.
� Keep fingertips, earlobes, and noses covered if you go outside.
� Keep clothing dry; if a layer becomes wet, remove it.

Seniors, infants, the homeless, and those with chronic medical conditions are at increased risk. If you know of friends, neighbors, or family members who may be at risk, check on them to make sure their heat is working and that they are okay.

Helping Others

Recognize the signs and symptoms of hypothermia and frostbite:

Hypothermia is a life-threatening condition where body temperature is abnormally low. Symptoms may include shivering, slurred speech, sluggishness, drowsiness, unusual behavior, confusion, dizziness, and shallow breathing.

Frostbite is a serious injury to a body part frozen from exposure to the cold. It most often affects extremities like fingers and toes or exposed areas such as ears or parts of the face. Redness and pain may be the first warning of frostbite. Other symptoms include numbness or skin that appears pale, firm, or waxy.

Provide first aid:
� If you suspect a person is suffering from frostbite or hypothermia, bring him or her someplace warm and call 911.
� If medical help is not immediately available, re-warm the person, by removing any damp clothing and covering them with warm blankets.

What to Do if You Lose Heat or Hot Water at Home

Any New York City tenant without adequate heat or hot water should first speak with the building owner, manager, or superintendent. If the problem is not corrected, tenants should call 311. The Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) will take measures to ensure your heat and hot water is restored.


Improper use of portable heating equipment can lead to fire or dangerous levels of carbon monoxide. Take precautions to ensure you are heating your home safely.

Fire safety tips:
� Use only portable heating equipment that is approved for indoor use.
� Keep combustible materials, including furniture, drapes, and carpeting at least three feet away from the heat source. NEVER drape clothes over a space heater to dry.
� Always keep an eye on heating equipment. Never leave children alone in the room where a space heater is running. Turn it off when you are unable to closely monitor it.
� Be careful not to overload electrical circuits.
� Make sure you have a working smoke detector in every room. Check and change batteries often.

Carbon monoxide safety tips:

� Install carbon monoxide detectors in your home and check them regularly to make sure the batteries are working. NYC law requires owners to provide and install at least one approved carbon monoxide alarm within 15 feet of the primary entrance to each sleeping room.
� Make sure your heating system is kept clean and properly vented; have worn or defective parts replaced.
� Kerosene heaters and propane space heaters are dangerous and illegal in New York City.
� Never heat your home with a gas stove or oven.
� Never use any gas-powered appliance, charcoal grill, or hibachi indoors.
� Never run a car or truck in a garage or enclosed area. Clear exhaust pipes before starting a car or truck after it snows.
� The most common symptom of carbon monoxide poisoning is headache. However, symptoms may also include dizziness, chest pain, nausea, and vomiting. In severe cases, people can become increasingly irritable, agitated and confused, eventually becoming lethargic and lapsing into unconsciousness.
� If you suspect carbon monoxide poisoning, open windows, leave your home, get to fresh air immediately, and call 911.


For more information about cold weather safety and how you can prepare for emergencies call 311 or visit

NYC Emergency Management will continue to monitor this weather system, and the agency's Human Services Unit will keep you updated as the situation develops. If you have any questions or comments during this time, please do not hesitate to contact the Human Services Unit. If you need assistance immediately contact OEM Watch Command at 718-422-8700.

NYC Emergency Management Human Services Unit:
Human Services email distribution list:

Johanna Conroy
Director of Human Services
Cell: 917-662-3295

Marianne Jackson
Special Needs Liaison
Cell: 646-335-5693

Eli Fresquez
Special Needs Coordinator
Cell: 347-386-0389

Cynthia Barton
Disaster Housing Recovery Program Manager
Cell: 917-468-2768

Jonas Ballreich
Human Services Emergency Preparedness Specialist
Cell: 347-374-1058

Jay Brandt
Human Services Emergency Preparedness Manager
Cell: 646-596-3147

Annette Santiago
Director of Human Resources
Cell: 347-534-7028

Marnie Suss
Interagency Training Coordinator
Cell: 718-468-1728

January 27, 2015