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It’s only going to get colder

The coldest days of this young year are upon Wilton and the region this week and could bring more snow by the weekend.

Temperatures were in the teens Tuesday morning, Jan. 22, and expected to reach a high of 24 degrees before falling into single digits Tuesday night that could feel like 0 degrees. Along with the frigid temperatures, a “blustery northwest wind” is expected to blow at 14 to 21 mph, according to the National Weather Service. While the wind is expected to die down after dark, the wind chill could be “as low as zero,” according to the weather service.

It is expected to be even colder with scattered flurries in the afternoon on Wednesday, Jan. 23. The high Wednesday is expected to be near 20 with northwest winds 9 to 14 mph. Wednesday night could bring more scattered flurries with a low around 10 that feels like -1 with the windchill.

Thursday’s high is also expected to be near 20 with northwest winds of 9 to 16 mph — with gusts as high as 28 mph, according to the weather service. Thursday night’s low is expected to be about 9 degrees.

Friday, Jan. 25, could bring more snow in the afternoon as temperatures rise to as high as 27. The chance of snow is 60% during the afternoon and evening. The nighttime low is expected to be around 17.

The weather service says it could be “a moderate accumulating snowfall Friday into Friday night as an area of low pressure passes south of the tri-state region,” according to a hazardous weather outlook.

Over the weekend, the weather is expected to be in the mid to high 20s with lows in the mid to low teens.

But Monday could see temperatures above freezing for the first time in a week.

Using a space heater?

Such low temperatures could prompt people to use a space heater to keep warm.

Propane space heaters operate safely and efficiently, when used correctly. According to the Propane Gas Association of New England, advanced features on space heaters include safer electronic ignition systems (eliminating the use of fuel for standing pilots) and direct vent installations, which can be exhausted through an exterior sidewall. The units can also be mounted on walls — away from children, pets, and potentially hazardous household items.

But there’s only so much a space heater can do to keep itself safe.

Top safety tips for consumers:

1. Use the right kind of space heater. Some propane space heaters are designed only for use outdoors, while others are designed for indoor use. High levels of carbon monoxide can be generated from heaters that aren’t designed for indoor use.

2. Avoid close contact. To help prevent fires and/or burns, place heaters at least three feet away from any objects such as bedding, furniture, or drapes, and avoid close contact by people or pets. Some heaters have very hot surfaces.

3. Keep vent pipes clear. If your space heater is meant to be ventilated, check the vents to be sure flue gases can flow easily to the outdoors. Obstructions can cause build-up of carbon monoxide in your home.

4. Install a carbon monoxide detector. Carbon monoxide can make you dizzy, give you headaches, cause flu-like symptoms, or even result in brain damage or death. Carbon monoxide detectors wet you know when there are excessive levels of this poison in the air.

5. Get out and call 911. If you or a family member shows physical symptoms of poisoning, get everyone out of the building and call 911. If it’s safe to do so, open windows to allow entry of fresh air and turn off any appliances you suspect may be releasing carbon monoxide.

Learn about space heater safety at www.propanesafety.com/space-heater-safety, and learn more about carbon monoxide at www.propanesafety.com/carbon-monoxide-safety.

For more information on safe uses of propane, visit www.pgane.org and www.usepropane.com.

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