Bitter Cold Can Be Dangerous; Red Cross Offers Winter Safety Tips

Staff Writer
Aledo Times Record

MOLINE, ILLINOIS, Wednesday, February 18, 2015 — Bitterly cold temperatures will continue for the next couple of days and the American Red Cross has steps people can take to stay safe during this “This extreme cold is dangerous and we want to remind people of some of the things they can do to protect themselves,” said Amber Wood, Executive Director for the American Red Cross Serving the Quad Cities and West Central Illinois. “We want everyone to know how to safely ride out these winter conditions.”

COLD WEATHER SAFETY TIPS Here are ten ways to stay safe during this latest round of cold

1. Wear layers of lightweight clothing to stay warm. Gloves and a hat will help prevent losing body heat.

2. Know the signs of hypothermia - confusion, dizziness, exhaustion and severe shivering. If someone has these symptoms, they should get immediate medical attention.

3. Watch for symptoms of frostbite including numbness, flushed gray, white, blue or yellow skin discoloration, numbness or waxy feeling skin.

4. Bring the pets indoors. If that’s not possible, make sure they have enough shelter to keep them warm and that they can get to unfrozen water.

5. Avoid frozen pipes - run water, even at a trickle, to help prevent them from freezing. Keep the thermostat at the same temperature day and night to help avoid freezing pipes.

6. Do not use a stove or oven to heat the home.

7. Space heaters should sit on a level, hard surface and anything flammable should be kept at least three feet away.

8. If using a fireplace, use a glass or metal fire screen large enough to catch sparks and rolling logs.

9. Turn off space heaters and make sure fireplace embers are out before leaving the room or going to bed.

Learn how to treat cold weather related emergencies by downloading the free Red Cross First Aid App at redcross.org/apps. More information about winter safety is available on redcross.org.

About the American Red Cross:

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.