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KARM puts out the white flag as temps dip near freezing, helping hundreds of people stay warm

More than 360 people went inside KARM Monday night as temps dipped down in the 30s. KARM said it normally sees just under 300.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Knox Area Rescue Ministries said it has already begun raising the white flag to signal they are open to help people in need of a warm place to stay this winter.

More than 360 people went inside KARM Monday night as temps dipped down in the 30s. KARM said it normally sees just under 300.

Temperatures have already begin to drop below freezing in Knoxville as of November 23, prompting the rescue ministry to get the word out that it will remain open for anyone in need of a warm place to stay. 

The white flag is meant to be a sign for people who need a place to stay that the chapel is open for them. It can provide relief from the weather during uncomfortable and unsafe conditions.

While in the chapel, people can get food and water. They can also stay in KARM's dorms at night, according to officials.

KARM rolls out the white flag during colder months when the temperature dips below 40 degrees Fahrenheit.

"When it hits 32, you're already cold. There are a lot of digits between 32 and 40, so we figured that 40 was really the very lowest that a person is comfortable out in the cold," Karen Bowdle with KARM said.

They said that they also roll out the white flag when temperatures hit 85 degrees Fahrenheit in the warmer months, or when the heat index rises to 90 degrees Fahrenheit.

KARM is located at 418 North Broadway in Knoxville.