Arctic temps blast Metro Detroit, ice jams continue plaguing St. Clair River, where to find a warming shelter

Metro Detroiters are waking up to about 1-4 inches of snow in some parts of the region, a fresh layer to kick off February. However, the big story for the rest of the day and the weekend is going to be the temperature.

Wind gusts will drive temperatures down throughout the day, settling into the low teens by mid-Friday.

Factoring in the wind chill though, it's going to feel even colder.

What started out as a winter weather advisory until 4 a.m. has been extended until 10 a.m. Snow accumulation reached up to 4 inches in parts of Oakland County, with a little bit less in Detroit and downriver.

The cold temperatures coming across the Great Lakes will stir up more snow throughout the day, however much of Metro Detroit has seen the end of its accumulating flurries for the day. The next time more snow comes will be Saturday.

However, it's the freezing temperatures that represent a bigger concern for residents. 

Air temperatures will fall throughout the morning and afternoon before leveling out by midday. With wind gusts up to 45 mph expected, temperatures could feel as low as near-0 at times.

At that temperature, frostbite only takes 30 minutes to set in, so be careful about what you wear and don't shortchange extra layers. 

Much of this can be expected over the weekend as lows remain in the single digits.

Warming shelters and traffic updates

As with each round of winter conditions that sweep through, there are some changing dynamics to be aware of. 

The biggest is an accident on westbound I-96 near Outer Drive, at exit 180. The first two lanes have been blocked since 6 a.m., however, traffic is getting by in the right two lanes. 

With plummeting temperatures, Counties has several warming shelters activated today for those who don't have a sufficient amount of heat. In Macomb County, they include locations: Bruce Township, Center Line, Chesterfield Township, Clinton Township, Eastpointe, Harrison Township, Macomb Township, Memphis, Mount Clemens, Richmond, Roseville, St. Clair Shores, Shelby Township, Warren, and Washington Township.

In Wayne County, that includes: Allen Park, Canton Township, Dearborn Heights, Grosse Ile, Livonia, Rockwood, Taylor, Wayne, and Westland. 

Detroit has three warming centers, which include:

  • Cass Community Social Services, 1534 Webb, Detroit, 
  • Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries Genesis House 3, 12900 W. Chicago, Detroit
  • Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries Third Street, 3535 Third Ave., Detroit

The city also has a fourth center at the TCF Center that's operated by the Pope Francis Center.

Grandson vaccinates grandma

An 88-year-old woman scheduled for her vaccine received the injection from a very special nurse - her grandson. Richard Simkow, who works as an RNA at Beaumont Hospital in Dearborn, gave her the jab Thursday.

"You're not going to hurt grandma, are you?" she asked, laughing. "Of course not," he said.

For Katherine, seeing her grandson on the front lines of the pandemic has been an honor. Building up immunity is important to her and the family since COVID-19 has already infected some members.

That includes Richard, who, along with his wife, both experienced mild symptoms.  

Ice jams wreak havoc along St. Clair River

Heavy snow and high water, two weather conditions Michigan knows very well, have brutalized the coastline communities along the St. Clair River the past few days.

Ice jams on the river have forced high amounts of water onto land, inundating residents of St. Clair County with flooding. Water has spilled over seawalls, onto roads, and into yards.

The U.S. and Canadian Coast Guard teams have deployed ice-breaking ships to help relieve some of the pressure on the area. However, problems have persisted for more than three days now. 

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is also providing technical support as a state of emergency is announced for the area. 

Northville Township Police now carrying 'calming kits'

Northville police have now outfitted its officers with calming bags specifically designed to help people with autism.

They include ear muffs for sound and sunglasses for vision, both household items that can reduce sensory stimuli that can overwhelm children and adults on the spectrum. They also have fidget spinners, chew necklaces, and eventually weighted blankets.

Officer Andrew Domzalski, who came up with the idea and soon plans on having everyone carrying them, says they're necessary to make sure situations can stay soothing for people, instead of having them escalate.

State police also see benefits to having these tools. One lieutenant even argued expanding the idea to other law enforcement agencies.

What else we're watching

  1. What's some inclement winter temperature without a round of school closures? And there are a lot. Check to see if your district is on the list. 
  2. The Phoenix of the Detroit Fire Department, a non-profit that helps the community, is hosting a Coat Giveaway today from 1 - 3 p.m. at 2470 Collingwood St.
  3. The Maple Theater in Bloomfield Hills has reopened after restrictions on concessions were lifted. The theater's first showings will be Friday, with plans to be open Wednesday through Sunday.
  4. The Michigan governor has created a Student Recovery Advisory Council which will guide districts restarting in-person schooling. Gretchen Whitmer has said she wants all districts to offer some kind of in-person learning available. 
  5. More progress has been made in the vaccine world. Johnson and Johnson, whose new Covid vaccine variant only requires one injection, has requested an emergency authorization for its treatment. The AstraZeneca-Oxford Vaccine was also shown to be 75% effective in a new study out of the UK.

Live on FOX 2

Daily Forecast

It's going to be a cold weekend with Friday kicking off with wind gusts and a high of 23 degrees. Expect more of the same Saturday and an even colder Sunday. A winter weather advisory is in effect until 10 a.m.

Senate adopts budget resolution for coronavirus relief after marathon vote-a-rama

The "vote-a-rama" in the Senate that started at about 2:30 p.m. Thursday concluded shortly before 6 a.m. Friday after a marathon process in which Republicans forced Democrats to take votes on tough issues for more than 15 hours. 

The Senate adopted a budget resolution for coronavirus relief 51-50 with Vice President Harris casting the tie-breaking vote. It's not a final bill, but allows the Senate to proceed toward a final bill under the budget reconciliation rules, which would let Democrats pass a coronavirus stimulus plan by going around a GOP filibuster as long as their caucus remains united. 

Senate Republicans were taking advantage of a Senate procedure that allows them to propose a plethora of amendments to the budget resolution Democrats are using to advance their coronavirus stimulus plan.

"I am so thankful that our caucus stayed together in unity. We had no choice given the problems facing America and the desire to move forward. And we have moved forward," Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said. "Many bipartisan amendments were adopted, so this was a bipartisan activity."