Emergency responders were preparing Friday for an increase in calls to help vulnerable people outside in Boston as temperatures drop to extreme levels.
Temperatures were already in the teens by Friday afternoon, and there was a small uptick in 911 calls for requests to check on people outside in the city.
"There's a crew right now checking out somebody down on the Common that's in a sleeping bag," said Steven McHugh, deputy superintendent for Boston EMS.
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By 6 p.m. Friday, Bostonians and first responders risked frostbite with about 30 minutes of exposure outside, and by 10 p.m., that time cuts in half to nearly 15 minutes.
Also, fire officials were asking the public to help themselves, and first responders, minimize the number of 911 calls, giving three tips:
- Check carbon monoxide and smoke detectors
- Perform routine maintenance on chimneys and heating systems
- Keep space heaters three feet away from flammable objects