Los Angeles County health officials on Sunday issued a cold weather alert for what's expected to be a chilly week in Southern California.
Starting Monday, wind chill temperatures are expected to drop below freezing in the Antelope and Santa Clarita valleys, as well as the San Gabriel Mountains, according to the L.A. County Department of Public Health. The cold weather is forecast to last until at least Friday.
"Children, the elderly, and people with disabilities or special medical needs are especially vulnerable during cold weather. Extra precaution should be taken to ensure they don’t get too cold when they are outside,” Dr. Muntu Davis, the county's health officer, said in a statement. “There are places where people can go to stay warm, such as shelters or other public facilities."
Davis advised residents "not to use stoves, barbeques or ovens to heat their homes due to the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.”
Officials also reminded Southland residents to check in frequently with family members, friends and neighbors in affected areas with limited mobility and limited access to heat — including seniors and those who are ill — and to offer assistance if needed. Pets should be kept indoors when temperatures drop, they added.
Most of the Southern California region is expected to see highs in the 60s beginning Monday with lows in the mid-40s at night, said National Weather Service meteorologist Rich Thompson. Forecasters expect cloudy skies and a 60% to 70% chance of rain showers beginning Thursday night and continuing through Saturday or Sunday.
"There's the potential for an extended wet period that will bring decent rainfall to the area," Thompson said.
The Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority has a winter shelter program available for those who need a warm and dry place to stay. Locations and transportation information are online at www.lahsa.org or by calling the L.A. County information line at 211.
This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.