Wednesday morning's temperatures were the coldest recorded in the city since 2011, but crossing guards, road work crews and many other New Yorkers were forced to do their jobs in the cold outdoors. NY1's Vivian Lee filed the following report.
The coldest temperatures recorded in two years chilled the city Wednesday morning. The thermometer only reached 11 degrees in Central Park and 12 degrees in LaGuardia and JFK Airports.
The city has opened warming centers in the five boroughs, to prevent cold-related emergencies.
View a list of all city warming center locations..
Meanwhile, work crews labored overnight in the cold to repair a water main break at Cherry Street and FDR Drive in the Lower East Side.
The break, which was reported on Tuesday night and left about 150 people, including residents at the East River Houses, without water, according to the Department of Environmental Protection. By 6 a.m. Wednesday, water was restored.
Jay Nunes, who has worked outside as a construction and repair worker for 29 years, knew he had to suit up when he was called to work on the water main break.
"Many layers. I do a lot of camping, a lot of winter camping, so I've learned over the years, a lot of layers," said Nunes. "You can't wear cotton next to the skin."
From movers to crossing guards, many workers had to spend their morning shift outdoors.
When a bundled-up crossing guard was asked which part of him was coldest, he answered, "My feet and my hands. The rest of me is OK."
Two men repairing a fire hydrant had to work with freezing cold water.
"You just got to deal with it. Emergencies like this, you got to work with it," said a worker.
Meanwhile, at a warming center in the Woodside section of Queens, some who stopped by for the day said the heat in their apartments unexpectedly gave out.
"Oh gee, it was really cold. I had to put an extra robe on, you know, to walk around my house," said Judith Nolfo, a resident from the Woodside Houses complex.
Others said they have suffered every winter for years with heat going on and off intermittently at the Woodside Houses.
"Me and the other seniors here, we stay until late to keep warm because we go home, we know we ain't got no heat unless you got your oven on," said Yeteva Rich, another resident.
Temperatures are not expected to rise about the freezing point until Monday. As for Friday, forecasts are only calling for light snow, as opposed to the initial prediction of a heavy snowstorm.