Effingham Daily News, Effingham, IL

January 6, 2014

County opens warming centers

Bill Grimes
Effingham Daily News

EFFINGHAM — Several warming centers have been set up throughout Effingham County in an effort to accommodate people who need a place to stay during the current cold snap.

County Board Chairman Jim Niemann, who was helping out at the county's Emergency Operations Center, said this afternoon that the five warming centers established as of 3 p.m. were at the Edgewood Fire Protection District station, Edgewood American Legion hall, Altamont Fire Protection District, Dieterich Fire Protection District and Watson Fire Protection District.

Niemann said all five centers are manned and ready to accept those who need a place to stay.

Also today, Niemann said those who do not NEED to travel should stay home.

"Travel is still very hazardous with not only the wind chill and temperature, but with the icy roads," he said.

Niemann said anyone who had to go out in a vehicle should have flashlights, water, cell phone, blankets and high-energy foods in their vehicle in case they get stranded. He added that anything high in sugar content, such as candy bars, cookies, brownies and protein bars, would be good for the stranded motorist to maintain energy.

Niemann said no deaths related to Sunday's blizzard and today's record cold had been reported within Effingham city or county by mid-afternoon today. He encouraged people who do venture out in their vehicle to let someone know when they are leaving and when they arrive at their destination.