Update: Riverhead Town opens warming center in Aquebogue

BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO | Riverhead building and grounds workers shoveling downtown by the River and Roots Community Garden Tuesday morning.

Update: With temperatures dropping, Riverhead Town officials have opened a warming center at the Senior Center in Aquebogue. The center, located at 60 Shade Tree Lane in Aquebogue, is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, town officials said.

The announcement comes after Southampton Town opened three warming centers the same day, including one in Flanders, for residents who find themselves out in the cold as temperatures drop across the North Fork.

The Flanders shelter will be open at 655 Flanders Road from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, Southampton police said. Two other warming centers will be open at the Hampton Bays Senior Center and Bridgehampton Community Center.

The wind chill may bring temperatures down to below zero in the next few days, according to the statement. The centers will be open for residents who don’t have enough heat to stay warm in the extreme cold.

Residents are advised to wear a hat, hood or scarf, multiple layers, and cover up fingertips and noses while outdoors, police said. Clothing should be kept dry, and residents should avoid drinking alcohol outside because it increases the risk of hypothermia and frostbite, police said.

For more information on the warming centers, call (631) 728-1235.

The Suffolk County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals has also advised residents to move dogs and cats indoors during the cold spell. Pets’ skin can turn red, white, or gray when they get frostbite, the SPCA said. If you suspect your pet has frostbite, call your vet immediately.

Dog owners are also advised to make sure their doghouses have waterproof roofs and enough insulation inside, according to the group. Some older dogs or dogs with short hair can’t remain outside in the cold for long and should remain indoors, the SPCA said.

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