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Algoma Public Health issues weather related warning

Tuesday, January 07, 2014   by: SooToday.com Staff

Algoma Public Health

Extreme Weather Alert

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With a wind chill warning and snow squall watch in effect, Algoma Public Health would like to remind the public to take appropriate precautions to keep warm and stay safe outdoors.

Stay in heated buildings as much as possible and take shelter from strong winds.

Extreme caution is advised for people heading outdoors.

Expected wind chills range from - 40°C to - 45°C. Exposed skin can freeze in less than 5 minutes.

Wear appropriate layers of clothing and a hat. Almost 40% of body heat loss can occur through the head.

Hypothermia and frostbite are the most common and preventable injuries. Know what signs and symptoms to look for:

Hypothermia

Look for shivering, exhaustion, confusion, fumbling/uncoordinated movements, memory loss, slurred speech and drowsiness.

Treat hypothermia by moving the person to shelter, replacing wet clothing with dry clothing, and wrapping them in warm blankets. Seek medical attention if experiencing these symptoms.

Frostbite

Look for white/grayish skin area; skin feeling unusually firm, waxy or numb. Body extremities are often the first to be frozen, for example, the nose, cheeks, ears, fingers, and toes. Slowly warm the body part in warm water not hot and seek medical attention immediately.

For more information on climate please visit
http://climate.weather.gc.ca/

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Comments
3
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Pakadeva 1/7/2014 11:58:22 AM Report

Good advice, especially for visitors unaware what these cold temperatures can do to you.
LRP 1/7/2014 12:29:19 PM Report

The heat-loss-through-the-head-myth is a bit disturbing in that it's an announcement from our trusted Algoma Public Heath!!!
PLEASE update your research APH - years and years and years of studies have disproven your statement.

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LIVESCIENCE.COM
"How special is the human head compared with other body parts when it comes to losing or retaining body heat? As it turns out, not that special.
Even the U.S. Army Field Manual used to claim "40 to 45 percent of body heat" is lost through the head, but it is simply not true, according to the British Medical Journal.
This heat-loss myth probably came from experiments in the 1950s, when military researchers exposed subjects to frigid temperatures. While their bodies were bundled up, their heads were exposed and and they were found to have lost more heat from their noggins.
n 2006, scientists revisited the question. They tested subjects in cold water with and without wetsuits, sometimes with their heads out of water and sometimes with their heads submerged. They found that the head accounts for about 7 percent of the body's surface area, and the heat loss is fairly proportional to the amount of skin that's showing. [...]
At most, according to a 2008 report in BMJ, a person loses 7 percent to 10 percent of their body heat through their head."
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I remember hearing this myth about the head as a child as well (in the 60s!!). If you keep your arm exposed in the same cold, the likelihood of skin freezing parallels that of the head.

Use common sense. And PLEASE take your pets inside to play today. Wrestle with them, play with them, but keep 'em indoors. Please?
kamen 1/7/2014 3:25:14 PM Report

I had bundled up today thinking it was enough...nope could have used a second and maybe third pair of socks and probably a second sweater under my coat.
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