Metro Prepares For Dangerously Cold Temperatures

Dangerously cold temperatures are on the way, and many in the metro are gearing up for the worst.

For many, the obvious plan is just to avoid going outside as much as possible. Of course, with that idea, you've got to be ready to shut yourself in for the time being.

For others though, it's about finding a place to survive the cold.

At the Hy-Vee at 51st and Center in Omaha, workers were trying to keep up with the rush on Saturday.

With extreme temperatures on the horizon, customers were flooding in for basic groceries in case they couldn't make it out later.

Debra Powers picked basics like cereal and dog food; simple items she says can make a difference later. "Just in my past experience, you never know when you're going to be left home for several days and you need to stock up on a few necessities," she says.

As she and her daughter made their way out to the car from the store, the cold was already moving in.

While they could at least take shelter at home, some others in the city didn't have the same option.

The Open Door Mission is hoping to solve that problem.

Unfortunately, with 816 beds available, they're already beyond capacity.

"Since a couple of days before Christmas, we've been sleeping people on mats in an overflow status. For not only men, but for women and children," says Candace Gregory, CEO of the Open Door Mission.

However, Gregory says they'll keep helping anyone they can.

Though the beds are taken, the men's and women's centers each have more than 100 floor mats that can be used.

The floor may not sound great, but Bill Gibson, who has been homeless for years, knows what it's like trying to survive out in the cold. He says he'd rather take his chances inside anytime. "It ain't no fun. Being out in that cold air, you try to do everything to keep warm and there ain't no place to go. You can freeze to death out in that kind of weather," he says.

While everyone staying at the Open Door Mission will have a warm place to stay at night, some still need help during the day.

46% of the homeless staying there do have jobs and work.

The mission is always asking for items like blankets and coats to help people make it through the day as well.

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