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Stay Safe in Freezing Cold Weather

by Rachel

With all the ridiculously cold temperatures we have been having this week, I want to take the time to remind everyone of some safety tips for the winter. So many things can happen in freezing temperatures especially when the wind chill is factored in and it doesn't take long for frostbite to occur.

Be prepared and stay safe with these winter safety tips from USA Today.

1. STOCK UP - Have at least a week's worth of food, water, safety supplies, medicines, battery powered lights and radios so you don't have to go outside in harsh conditions.

2. WEAR LAYERS - If you do have to go outside, make sure and wear lots of layers. The layers closest to your body should be made of synthetic material or wool, cotton is not a good insulator. Then a sweater or fleece followed by a jacket that is waterproof and insulated, to help you stay dry and warm.

3. WATCH FOR SIGNS OF FROSTBITE - It only takes minutes for frostbite to happen. The first sign is a prickly or itching sensation. The next sign is that the skin will start to change color and will have a waxy or hard feeling. And then finally, the skin will become numb and blister. If the skin does blister, DO NOT pop!

4. LEAVE FAUCETS SLIGHTLY ON - Water pipes will freeze or easily break so leave the faucet dripping slightly to avoid broken pipes.

5. DON'T OVEREXERT YOURSELF - Try not to strain or spend too much time at once shoveling or blowing snow. The body will work hard to stay warm and overexertion could lead to health problems including a heart attack.

6. PROTECT YOUR PETS - Cats and dogs should be inside almost all the time in freezing temps. Dogs can go outside to do their business, but then should be brought immediately back in. Pets can get frostbite just as easily as people.

7. KEEP A SURVIVAL KIT IN YOUR CAR - Cold weather makes for bad driving conditions so keep a survival kit in your car that includes things such as blankets, flashlight, spare phone charger, and a bright colored towel or ribbon to tie on your antenna to let other drivers know you are stranded.

Everyone stay warm and safe throughout this frigid winter!