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Michiana Cities and residents prepare for deep freeze

SOUTH BEND, Ind – Michiana cities and residents are preparing for this week’s deep freeze.

The city of South Bend is rolling out plans to keep people warm and safe for what is expected to potentially be record cold temperatures. 

“As you guys know we will see some snow tapering off tonight but it’s going to be followed by some dangerously low temperatures that are very concerning for us,” South Bend Director of Public Works Eric Horvath said at a press conference on Monday announcing the city’s plan to cut non-essential services while boosting essential services in an effort to keep people in the community safe. 

Temperatures are expected to drop below zero on Wednesday with wind chills even worse causing the city of South Bend in conjunction with the county and the Red Cross to open the Charles Black Center from Tuesday at 9am to Friday as an emergency warming center for people without heat along with the Winter Amnesty shelter at Tutt street and the Center for Homeless downtown which will have its doors open to everyone in need during this time. 

“Essential city services will still operate and they’ll need to continue to operate police, fire, ems, water and sewer, 311 those will all still be in operation and any other essential services will remain in operation during that time period,” Horvath said. 

Transpo will offer free rides on fixed routes Tuesday through Thursday and the Humane Society of St. Joseph County will offer a place for pets to stay for free during this time. 

Horvath said the safety measures are necessary with the life threatening weather and the city’s efforts will be judged on the results.

“I think it’s a success if people are safe quite simply and so that’s our first and foremost issue and what we are looking to do is keep people safe,” Horvath said. 

Along with South Bend’s emergency measures the city of Niles will be offering free rides to one of the city’s public or private warming center’s by calling Dial a Ride from 7am to 5pm beginning on Tuesday through Friday.  

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