B-r-r-r Old Man Winter will make his official debut on December 21st. He will be bringing much colder air with highs in the 20s and lows in the single digits and possibly close to zero. Marshall County Emergency Management warns citizens to be winter ready.
According to the National Weather Service, arctic air is expected to spill over much of the US in the coming weeks. The attached map specifically favors below-normal temperatures for the period of December 21 through 27. At times, high temperatures may only be in the 20s with lows in the single digits. Snow is also likely within this period.
Here are a few cold-weather safety tips if you have to be outside:
- Limit time outdoors in cold, wet, or windy weather. Pay attention to weather forecasts and wind chill readings. In very cold, windy weather, exposed skin can develop frostbite in a matter of minutes.
- Dress in several layers of loose, warm clothing. Air trapped between the layers of clothing acts as insulation against the cold. Wear windproof and waterproof outer garments to protect against wind, snow, and rain. Choose undergarments that wick moisture away from the skin. Change out of wet clothing — particularly gloves, hats, and socks — as soon as possible.
- Wear a hat or headband that fully covers the ears. Heavy woolen or windproof materials make the best headwear for cold protection.
- Wear mittens rather than gloves. Mittens provide better protection. Or try a thin pair of glove liners made of a wicking material (such as polypropylene) under a pair of heavier gloves or mittens.
- Wear socks and sock liners that fit well, wick moisture, and provide insulation. Consider hand and foot warmers as well. Be sure foot warmers don’t make boots too tight, restricting blood flow.
- Watch for signs of frostbite. Early signs of frostbite include changes in skin color, prickling, and numbness. Seek warm shelter if you notice signs of frostbite.
- Plan to protect yourself. When traveling in cold weather, carry emergency supplies and warm clothing in case you become stranded. If you’ll be in remote territory, tell others your route and expected return date.
- Don’t drink alcohol if you plan to be outdoors in cold weather. Alcoholic beverages cause the body to lose heat faster.
- Eat well-balanced meals and stay hydrated. Doing this even before you go out in the cold will help you stay warm.
- Keep moving. Exercise can get the blood flowing and help you stay warm, but don’t do it to the point of exhaustion.