Archive for Thursday, January 7, 2010

KDHE offers tips to survive freezing temperatures

January 7, 2010

The state of Kansas is experiencing severe freezing temperatures unlike it has seen in some time. The Kansas Department of Health and Environment offers the following helpful hints to get through the next few months:

• Wear appropriate outdoor clothing, such as layers of light, warm clothing, mittens, hats, scarves and waterproof boots.

• Sprinkle cat litter or sand on icy patches.

• Learn safety precautions to follow when outdoors.

• Be aware of the wind chill factor.

• Work slowly when doing outside chores.

• Take a friend and an emergency kit when you are participating in outdoor recreation.

• Avoid traveling when the weather service has issued advisories.

• If you must travel, inform a friend or relative of your proposed route and expected time of arrival.

• Always carry a cell phone with you in case of emergencies.

The KDHE also warns that serious health problems can occur, such as hypothermia or frostbite, if people don’t follow any or all of these precautions. Warning signs of hypothermia include shivering, exhaustion, memory loss and slurred speech. Warning signs of frostbite include pain or redness in any skin area.

If you detect symptoms of frostbite, get out of the cold or protect the exposed skin as much as possible. Either hypothermia or frostbite will require immediate medical care.

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