Even if you haven’t been hit by the record-breaking winter storm known as the “polar vortex” that’s been sweeping the midwest, chances are high that you know someone who has.
The well below-zero temperatures and freezing conditions have become terribly dangerous, and in many places, it isn’t even safe to go outside.
Many schools have scheduled snow days, and businesses have temporarily closed. Folks have been advised to stay indoors and bundle up.
According to the The New York Times, 2019’s January cold fest is breaking weather records that date back decades.
The Times also noted the storm is apparently to blame for at least 21 deaths. Over 2,300 U.S. flights have reportedly been canceled as well.
With conditions worse than we’ve seen in decades, it’s amazing to see the men and women who have fought the cold and risked their lives to help others.
First responders have kept up with their duties, putting out fires and carrying out rescues, not blinking at the ice and snow.
Pictures of some Minnesota firefighters rescuing a sweet golden retriever pup were taken and shared online. These may not melt the ice, but they’ll certainly melt your heart.
According to a Bloomington Fire Department tweet, the brave first responders were responding to a call for a house fire. Thankfully, the family and their dogs made it out of the home safely.
The fire chief in Cameron, Wisconsin, was shown facing the serious chill as well. His face and beard are shown covered in what appears to be frost.
“This is what it looks like after you’ve fought a fire in -50 degree wind chill,” the caption says on Instagram.
“The real [heroes] of Chicago’s ‘Polar Vortex!’” William Shapotkin wrote on Facebook. “Thank you, CFD & CPD and all other first responders!”
These are the heroes who continue to work tirelessly to ensure others remain comfortable and safe in their homes while they wait out the storm.
In Madison, Wisconsin, Madison Water Utility lead worker Jim Garde has been working essentially around the clock to fix burst pipes as temperatures nosedive. The breaks can take anywhere from four to 10 hours to fully fix, and Garde has been working hard in the frigid cold with his team to make sure those affected are back to having running water as quickly as possible.
We’re so thankful for any man or woman who has placed their own comfort and safety aside to make sure others are taken care of.
We know you work very long and difficult hours in often thankless jobs. You are the real heroes of this season.