River Forest Public Library River Forest Public Library

Cold Weather Safety

When temperatures in Cook County are expected to dip to unsafe levels, the County’s Department of Emergency Management and Regional Security provides an updated list of warming centers for residents to protect themselves and their families.

Anyone in need of a place to warm up as temperatures dip can find a range of options in the River Forest area. Local sites include the following:

  • Housing Forward, overnight shelters in various locations, 888.338.1744
  • Rush Oak Park Hospital, 520 S. Maple Ave. – open 24 hours, 708.383.9300
  • Oak Park Township Senior Services, 130 S. Oak Park Ave. – Ages 60 and over, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. weekdays, 708.383.8060
  • River Forest Community Center: 8020 West Madison Street, River Forest, Monday – Friday 8 am – 8 pm, (708) 771-6159
  • Oak Park Village Hall, 123 Madison St. – 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., weekdays, 708.383.6400
  • West Suburban Medical Center, 3 Erie Court – 5:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., 708.383.6200 (may extend hours if conditions warrant)
  • Housing Forward – Call 888.338.1744 for overnight shelter. Call 708.386.3800 if transportation is needed.

Cold Weather Safety Tips for Residents: 

  • Never use your oven for heat.
  • Never bring charcoal or gas grills indoors (they are a carbon monoxide hazard).
  • Make sure all portable heaters are unplugged when not in use.
  • Use electric space heaters with extreme caution – avoid placing them near curtains or other flammable materials and turn them off before going to bed.
  • Keep heat at adequate levels or leave faucets open with a slight drip to prevent pipes from freezing.
  • Keep moving. Your body generates its own heat when you engage in physical activities.

Cold Weather Pet Safety Tips:

  • If it’s too cold for you, it’s too cold for your pets! Keep pets indoors, limit time outside and ensure your pet has access to plenty of food and water.
  • Don’t forget to wipe your dog’s paws. Ice-melting chemicals can make your pet sick.