Allentown
46° F
Mostly Cloudy
Mostly Cloudy

Emergency officials: Prepare for dangerous blast of cold air

By Ryan Hughes, Reporter, RHughes@wfmz.com
Published On: Jan 02 2014 04:34:48 PM CST
Updated On: Jan 02 2014 05:35:25 PM CST

Pennsylvania state health and emergency management officials urged the public to be careful of accumulating snow, and to brace for the dangerous cold.

LAURELDALE, Pa. -

Pennsylvania state health and emergency management officials urged the public to be careful of accumulating snow and to brace for the dangerous cold.

Several boroughs and township declared a snow emergency ahead of the storm Thursday.   

The writing was on the wall outside Luppold Hardware in Laureldale, Berks Co.: "Snow!! It's coming."

"I'm ready for it. I'm ready for the snow," said Don Power, who lives in Laureldale.

Inside the hardware store, snow supplies were flying off the shelf. Owner Vince Spease said business was steady over the past few days. Bags of salt were being carried out Thursday as many prepared for another round of winter weather.

"We've been through a lot of shovels and salt. Last year, we did about five skids through the whole winter, and we're on the eighth skid already this year," said Spease, who added his store also repaired nearly double the amount of snow blowers this winter from last year.

Boyer's Food Market in Richmond Township was also jam packed Thursday afternoon. Cashiers were busy ringing up full loads of groceries ahead of the snow.

"So it's not even just people rushing in because they think of the milk, bread and eggs, it's been mainly people with full carts saying I don't want to leave my house for three days I want to get everything today," said Brieann Murray, who works at Boyer's.

With this storm also comes the extreme cold and temperatures we haven't seen in years.

Berks Encore is paying close attention. Meals on Wheels recipients were given blizzard packs containing non-perishable food in case the organization is forced to close on Friday.

"We're telling our seniors to be very very careful. Seniors are more vulnerable to frost bite and hypothermia even indoors," said Martha Sitler, vice president of education for Berks Encore.    

Officials said now is not the time to worry about the electric bill, and they told people to kick up the heat. Also, wear layers of clothing to help stay warm and bring your pets inside.