Governor Lamont Activates Severe Cold Weather Protocol as Frigid Temperatures Expected To Impact Connecticut Overnight
HARTFORD, CT (STL.News) Governor Ned Lamont today announced that he is directing Connecticut’s Severe Cold Weather Protocol to be activated beginning at noon on Monday, March 1, and remaining in effect through noon on Tuesday, March 2, 2021, as brutally frigid temperatures are expected to impact the state overnight and into the morning.
Forecasts are currently showing the state will experience a severe drop in temperature accompanied by strong winds that will bring the wind chill near or below zero across Connecticut on Monday evening. A wind advisory has been issued for the entire state, with gusts of 40 to 50 miles per hour anticipated at times.
The protocol sets up a system for state agencies and municipalities to coordinate with United Way 2-1-1 and Connecticut’s network of shelters to ensure that the most vulnerable populations receive protection from the severe conditions. United Way 2-1-1 operates as the point of contact for individuals who need shelter and transportation to shelters.
Anyone in need of shelter is urged to call 2-1-1 to get connected to these services. Safety measures have been enacted at shelters throughout the state to adhere to the needs of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
“While many of us were hoping that the brutal cold weather had ended for the season, it looks like we’re not out of the woods yet, as wind chills will be near or below zero across Connecticut tonight,” Governor Lamont said. “Shelters are open throughout the state, and we need to spread the word to the most vulnerable in our communities that these services are available. If you know if anyone who is in need of shelter, please call 2-1-1 and they will connect you to the nearest available locations.”
While activated, the protocol enacts the following actions:
- The Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection’s Division of Emergency Management and Homeland Security activates its WebEOC communications network, which is an internet-based system that enables local, regional, and state emergency management officials and first responders to share up-to-date information about a variety of situations and conditions. The system is used to monitor capacity at shelters across the state, enabling 2-1-1 to act as a clearinghouse to assist in finding shelter space for those who need it. Local officials, working through WebEOC, can alert 2-1-1 and the state when they open temporary shelters or warming centers.
- The Department of Social Services, Department of Housing, and Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services coordinate with 2-1-1 and the Connecticut Coalition to End Homelessness, along with community-based providers, to provide transportation for people seeking shelter.