By Matthew McCully
The weather was still what you could call balmy on Thursday afternoon when this picture was taken at Huntingville Dam, compared to the freeze on the way.
With temperatures forecast to plunge overnight, most local ski hills pre-emptively shut down, the Parc de la Gorge de Coaticook postponed its fishing tournament, and plenty of other events and activities across the Townships were pushed to a later date.
Locals would be wise to call first before venturing out this weekend.
Expecting increased pressure on the grid, Hydro-Sherbrooke asks that residents conserve energy whenever possible over this weekend, especially during peak hours on Friday morning between 6 a.m. and 9 a.m. and between 4:30 p.m. and 8 p.m. Friday afternoon.
In a press release the city offered the following conservation checklist:
o Lower the temperature by one or two degrees in unoccupied rooms;
o Avoid any unnecessary electrical use during peak periods;
o Postpone or reduce the use of the dryer and dishwasher;
o Unplug unused electronics;
To reduce consumption on Friday and Saturday, the City will be implementing the following measures:
o Turning off lights at City parks and rinks in the evening.
o Lowering the temperature in all City buildings during peak hours.
o Closing the ski area and the lighted cross at Mount Bellevue at 4 p.m.
Hydro-Sherbrooke will use all load shedding programs to their fullest extent for this
for this peak period, the city added.
The local health authority also sent out a warning, saying anyone planning outdoor activities during the next two days limit the length of outings, dress warmly, and schedule time to warm up inside.
Parents of young children should be especially careful as they are less sensitive to cold.
It is also important to watch for signs of frostbite, especially on the extremities of the body such as the ears, nose, cheeks, chin, fingers and toes, which are the most commonly affected areas. sign of frostbite usually resemble a burn.