Winter storm Grayson is battering the east coast and while the Western Mohawk Valley, including Utica and Rome, isn't expecting heavy snow, schools are already thinking about whether or not the extreme cold and wind warrants a school closing. Local parents have told WIBX that they are planning alternate daycare options as a precaution with the potential of cancellations.

Local school districts, especially those with several students who walk to school, are keeping an eye on the Wind Chill Warning issued for Friday morning by the National Weather Service. Winds gusting over 40 mph with sub zero temperatures on Friday will make for hazardous wind chill factors of 20 to 40 below zero. That combined with 1 to 3 inches of blowing snow expected throughout the region (2 to 4 inches with a Winter Weather Advisory issued in Herkimer County), conditions will be prime for some school closings. Central New York schools begin to consider student commuter safety when high winds are prevalent dropping wind chills of -20 degrees and below.

(Chart WIBX source: NOAA.gov)

The National Weather Service warns that sub-zero wind chills can cause dangerous frost bite in as little as 10-minutes of exposure and even hypothermia or death can occur if precautions are not taken.

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