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Brrrr! Charlestown Under Wind Chill Advisory, Frostbite Possible

Exposure of only 20 minutes can cause frostbite.

A surge of arctic air accompanied by gusty northernly winds on Friday, Jan. 3, resulted in the National Weather Service placing Charlestown and eastern Massachusetts under a Wind Chill Advisory until 9 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 4. 

Boston will see North winds stay in the 15 to 20 mph range with gusts up to 35 mph throughout Friday and into Saturday morning. With high temperatures not rising out of the low teens, wind chill index readings will be well below zero for the entire day and go as low as 30 below zero tonight. 

Frostbite can develop in just 20 minutes with a wind chill index of 20 below. Do not allow kids and animals to remain outdoors for long periods of time, due to the risk of frostbite. 

To keep warm, wear layers of clothing. This traps air between layers, forming a protective insulation. Also, wear a hat or headscarf. Much of your body's heat can be lost through your head and ears are especially prone to frostbite. Keep your hands and feet warm, too, as they tend to lose heat rapidly.

The arctic blast can also play havoc on vehicles and homes. The persistent cold can drain car batteries and damage poorly maintained vehicles. Tire pressure can drop significantly in cold weather of this magnitude. Many ice-melting compounds are much less effective at the temperatures expected. Pipes exposed to cold drafts from the outside can freeze. 

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