Officials are warning residents to take precautions as an arctic cold front moves through the tri-state and drops temperatures to frigid lows that could make a polar bear shiver.
Storm Team 4 is warning New York City residents to expect wind chills of 15 to 25 degrees below zero. Areas to the north of the city could feel even colder.
Mayor de Blasio is urging residents to take "extreme precautions." City workers will work to bring people living on the street to shelters or hospitals, he said.
Storm Team 4 was predicting that the New York City chill would feel like 2 degrees below zero at noon and 9 degrees below zero at 6 p.m.
A wind chill warning was in place from 1 p.m. Saturday to noon Sunday for Westchester, Rockland, Fairfield and other counties to the north. The rest of the tri-state was under a wind chill advisory.
Sunday morning will be so cold that lows might tie or break a 100-year record for the day set back in 1916, when temperatures were 2 degrees in Central Park on Valentine’s Day. The current forecast for Sunday is 2 degrees, Storm Team 4 says.
Storm Team 4 is projecting a high of 17 degrees for Valentine's Day, which would tie the record set in Central Park in 1979.
The New York City Buildings Department has ordered all crane operations suspended on Saturday. Last week's deadly crane collapse in Tribeca prompted Mayor Bill de Blasio to implement new crane protocols requiring that tall crawler cranes now go into safety mode whenever the forecast predicts winds of 20 mph or more. The previous threshold was 30 mph or more.
Saturday's wind gusts are forecast to gust up to 45 mph in the city.
The department has also issued an advisory urging property owners, builders and contractors to secure any loose material, equipment and scaffolding in preparation for the high winds.
Meanwhile, New Yorkers are worried about warming their homes in the bitter cold. The city's 311 hotline has seen a spike in calls this week about no heat or hot water, according to the Department of Housing Preservation and Development: on Tuesday, there were over 1,200 calls, Wednesday saw 1,100 calls and then a jump to 1,800 calls on Thursday. By 4 p.m. Friday, there were 1,850 complaints.
The cold weather is also thought to be a contributing factor to a track condition inside the Hudson River Tunnel that was causing delays on Amtrak's Northeast Corridor service Friday afternoon, according to an Amtrak spokesman.
It will begin to warm up next week, with highs in the low 30s on Monday and as high as 50 on Tuesday. A wintry mix and rain may accompany the warm-up Tuesday and Wednesday.