Cold continues, "dusting" of snow possible

January 6, 2010 6:11:05 PM PST
The deep freeze continued Wednesday with another night of lows in the 20s. Forecasters expect a very slight warm-up today, but temperatures will remain well below normal.

Another cold front is moving into the region bringing a chance of moisture. There could be light snow or flurries in parts of the Triangle overnight Thursday. Any accumulation is expected to be light.

Click here for the 7-day forecast

Crews in Wake County began treating roads on Wednesday with a salt brine mixture. The salt dries on the roads and helps prevent ice from forming if we do get significant snow Thursday.

Officials warn there could be some slick spots - especially on smaller roads and driveways - so be careful out there.

Heater dangers

The Red Cross is also warning people about the dangers of space heaters, fireplaces, and other secondary heat sources they may use to augment their main home heating systems in this extended cold snap.

It says heating materials used within the home are the second ranking cause of death and property loss in fires. Only smoking ranks higher. It says make sure there's plenty of room around space heaters and maintain fireplaces properly.

It also says:

1) Make sure all smoke detectors are working properly and have fresh batteries.

2) Never use charcoal or gas grills indoors to heat homes due to the threat of carbon monoxide poisoning.

3) Be extremely careful with candles. Keep candles away from combustible materials. Never leave children unattended in a room with lit candles. Keep candles, matches, and lighters out of the reach of children.

3) Inspect fireplaces and wood stoves. Have your chimney connections and flues inspected by a professional and cleaned if necessary prior to the start of every

heating season.

4) Use a sturdy screen or door in front of your fireplace when burning fires.

5) Burn only wood, never burn paper or pine boughs.

6) Be aware of overuse of electrical outlets - don't overload your electrical outlets and be careful of extension cords that present hazardous walkways.

7) Have one or more working fire extinguishers in your home. Most fire departments will provide training on how to use fire extinguishers.

Ice danger

At ABC11, we've gotten a lot of e-mails from viewers about the dangers of ice on lakes and ponds. Some ponds in the Triangle do have a light sheen of ice.

The Red Cross says as a general rule the ice on a lake or pond must be at least 4 inches think in order to support a person or large animal and ponds across central North Carolina do not have sufficient ice to support people.

Falling through into the water below will bring on hypothermia within minutes. Children are more susceptible to rapid hypothermia than large adults, so if you have an icy pond near you, warn children not to venture out onto the water.

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