According to the National Weather Service (NWS), the Indiana Region can expect a “strong polar blast” this weekend and into next week, with temperatures in the single digits along with wind chills as low as -15°F in some areas.
“As we brace for frigid weather, we have tips everyone can follow to stay safe,” said LaMar Holliday, regional communications director for the American Red Cross – Indiana Region. “Whether trying to keep your home warm or—if you must—going outdoors, there are steps you can take to prepare.”
SAFETY TIPS – COLD TEMPERATURES
- Bring your companion animals indoors.
- Learn how to protect pipes from freezing.
- If you must use a space heater, place it on a level, hard and nonflammable surface, such as a ceramic tile floor. Don’t place it on rugs and carpets, or near bedding and drapes; keep away children and pets.
- Plug space heater power cords directly into outlets – never into an extension cord.
- Never use a cooking range or oven to heat your home.
OUTDOORS (if you must go outside):
- Make any trips outside as brief as possible.
- Wear layered clothing, mittens or gloves, and a hat. Outer garments should be tightly woven and water repellent. Mittens or gloves and a hat will prevent the loss of body heat.
- Cover your mouth to protect your lungs from severely cold air. Avoid taking deep breaths; minimize talking.
- Watch for hypothermia and frostbite. Hypothermia symptoms include confusion, dizziness, exhaustion and severe shivering. Frostbite symptoms include numbness, flushed gray, white, blue or yellow skin discoloration, numbness, or waxy feeling skin.