A cold weather alert has been issued for parts of Los Angeles County that are expected to dip into freezing conditions this week.
Lancaster, Mt. Wilson, Pomona, the Santa Clarity Valley and Woodland Hills are expected to dip under 32 degrees this week, continuing in most areas until Friday, officials said.
“Children, the elderly, and people with disabilities or special medical needs are especially vulnerable during cold weather,” Dr. Muntu Davis, L.A. County’s health officer, said in a statement Sunday. “Extra precaution should be taken to ensure they don’t get too cold when they are outside.”
Freezing temperatures are expected in Lancaster and Mt. Wilson beginning Monday and continuing until Friday. Similar conditions are predicted to begin Tuesday for the Santa Clarita Valley and Wednesday for Pomona and Woodland Hills.
Public health officials are advising people in those areas to dress in layers of warm clothing if they’re going outside, to protect their head, hands and feet and to check on friends and family with limited mobility and access to heat. Pets should also be kept inside overnight.
Unhoused people are asked to contact the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority for assistance or enrollment in the Winter Shelter Program. More information is available through 211 or online at www.lahsa.org.
“There are places where people can go to stay warm, such as shelters or other public facilities,” Davis said.
Prolonged exposure to cold weather can lead to hypothermia and begins with early symptoms such as shivering, fatigue and disorientation. Frostbite is also a possibility for those exposed to snow.
Public health officials advised that people suffering from those conditions should be gently warmed, while immediate medical treatment should be sought out.
Davis warned that there is also an elevated risk of carbon monoxide poisoning as residents use riskier ways to heat their homes.
Only approved sources such as electric and natural gas heaters and fireplaces are recommended.
“We also want to remind people not to use stoves, barbecues or ovens to heat their homes due to the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning,” he said.