Emergency warming center opens as temperatures plunge

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — An emergency warming center opened Thursday night in Memphis as dangerously cold weather settles into the area.

Temperatures are expected to say below freezing until Monday, with wind chills well below zero.

If you don’t have anywhere to go in this bone-chilling cold, the warming center at the Hospitality Hub at 590 Washington Ave.. is open

It will run continuously until further notice, officials said.

FOX13′s reporter Tom Dees took a look at what preps were made and how many people the center can take.

At 6:30 p.m., people needing a ride through MATA can contact the Hub at 901-297-1680.

The warming center is a refuge for the homeless community, people without power, or those with simply no place to cold as the sets in.

Hospitality Hub Executive Director Kelcey Johnson said his biggest fear is that the word may not get out to those who need it.

“My concern is that if the word does not get out to people that people will attempt to stay outside on their own and sleep in a place that isn’t fit for human habitation.”

Johnson said most times the Hub is only an overnight shelter, but with the temperatures dipping so dangerously low, they are staying open around the clock.

Rooms are being broken down to accommodate four groups: men, women, women with children, and couples.

“We have the capacity for 200 people, but the Office of Emergency Management has pledged to take all of our overflows to a local community center if need be, but that has yet to be determined,” he said.

Warm blankets and pillows will be given out, along with hot meals. Coffee and breakfast are available in the morning.

“We will see where the weather takes us after that,” Johnson said.