Nick McWilliams reporting – As a weather system approaches from the west with snow, frigid temperatures, and high winds, warming centers are set to open in Tuscarawas County.

The county Emergency Management Agency in a release noted that while snowfall is expected to be fairly standard for this time of year, high winds could lead to whiteout conditions on roadways, with some gusts pushing the 50 mph mark. 

To assist with safe arrivals, residents are asked to take things slow and plan for a longer commute.

Additionally, the potential for flash freezing will be present, as temperatures could dip from the mid 30’s Thursday night down to the teens or lower early Friday.

In order to combat the cold, Tusc County EMS warming centers will open, due to wind chills approaching minus-20 degrees. 

Participating warming centers on Friday include Tuscarawas County Public Library locations and the Dover Public Library, and the Dover/New Philadelphia Salvation Army.

Locations open on Friday through Sunday are the Friends of the Homeless, Tri-County Joint Ambulance District, and the Mineral City Volunteer Fire Department. Those locations are open 24/7 and available for overnight stays.

Food and water will be available at each warming center.

The American Red Cross is assisting with cots and blankets, while Buehler’s and Giant Eagle in Dover, along with the New Philadelphia Dollar General and Journey’s End in Newcomerstown, are providing snacks and food.

Limit exposure to high winds in the colder temperatures to prevent exposure injuries.

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