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Long Cold Snap Has New Yorkers Yearning For A Return To Normal

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- It's been more than a week of extreme cold in the city, and New Yorkers are yearning for things to get back to normal, or at least warm up a bit.

CBS2's Jessica Layton was in the Bronx where firefighters had to battle the cold along with a fire that started in a furniture store and spread to nearby apartments.

All five boroughs were bundled up on what was the eighth night of one of the most uncomfortable cold snaps residents could remember.

"It's the worst winter I've seen," one said.

Will Detlesen was frozen to the core trying to get into a Trader Joe's on the Upper West Side.

"It's brutal," he said.

With temperatures in the low 20s and snow in the forecast, the only thing that seems longer than the line was the wait for the warm up that's still days away.

For plumbing and heating experts like the professionals at Petri's, the deep freeze means making more house calls than they're used to.

"People are not getting heat where they normally do, or the frozen pipes start to happen. It's been constant," Mike O'Brien said.

O'Brien was reminding homeowners to keep warm air flowing all throughout the home, know how to turn off the water in case a pipe does burst, and warned against using external heat to thaw a pipe which could cause a fire.

There have already been several disasters in the cold since Christmas. Firefighters in the Bronx were back to a scene of a fire and ice fighting flames at a furniture store and apartment building in Parkchester where thick icicles hung off power lines and fire escapes iced over as tenants tried to save themselves and their families.

"I just felt very scared, very scared. I didn't know whether we were going to slip when we came out of the apartment," Erica Ortiz said.

The water seemed to freeze the second it came out of the hoses and hydrants, encasing Wheeler Powell's car on the street.

"I have never felt the cold like I'm feeling it in these last few days," he said.


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