Precautions for Arctic Blast this Weekend

By
Frank Martino
February 12, 2016

Dear Members of the Columbia Community:

An arctic blast is expected to send temperatures falling to the single digits this weekend, with a wind chill well below zero.

In the face of this frigid weather, Facilities and Operations has been working hard to keep building temperatures at a safe and comfortable level. We would like to remind you that you can help prevent loss or damage of your property during this extreme cold temperature.

In advance of the cold weekend, here are a few simple things you can do to help in your room or office:

  • Take precautions.
  • Close and lock all windows, including in spaces not normally occupied. (It is in these "forgotten" rooms that, in addition to wasting energy, an open window can cause freezing and split pipes and resulting damage. It may be useful to designate someone to this task so it is not forgotten.)
  • Leave all radiator valves and fan coils turned on to ensure adequate heating and to avoid freeze damage. Fan coils should be set to the slowest speed setting. If you have questions about valve or coil settings, please contact the Facilities Services Center at x4-2222.
  • Clear clothing or furniture away from heaters to avoid inadequate heating that may cause freeze-ups and damage.
  • Make sure all faucets are off.
  • Close fume hoods when not in use and shut down non-essential lab equipment.
  • Be in touch. If you see an unsafe condition including leaks, opened windows and doors, or other issues, please immediately call our Facilities Services Center at 212-854-2222. We are open 24/7 and are prepared to handle your calls.
  • Be careful. Safety is our priority - use caution when navigating around campus.
  • We appreciate your support and patience as we work together to keep our campus safe, beautiful and functional. Please stay safe and warm.

Frank Martino
Vice President, Operations
Columbia University Facilities
(212) 854-0794 - Office
(212) 851-0434 - Fax

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