When temperatures drop below freezing, staying safe and warm can be quite a challenge. All of a sudden, simple tasks like walking to and from school, waiting at the bus stop, or keeping your home warm take a lot more planning and effort.
Preventive action is your best defense against serious health and safety hazards that can result from extreme cold weather conditions. So when you’re staring in the face of dangerous wind chills and sub-zero temps, follow these tips to keep your family and home safe and sound.
Heat Your Home Safely
Gas, oil, or electric, heating your home during winter can cost a pretty penny. But don’t sacrifice safety to save a few bucks. Never use your oven to heat your home. If you’re using a space heater, keep it at least three feet away from draperies, bed linens, and other flammable items. Be sure to turn off space heaters, and check that any embers in the fireplace are extinguished before leaving the house or going to bed.
Dress for the Weather
Stay warm with layers of lightweight clothing and cover as much exposed skin as possible to prevent frostbite. Remember, it only takes 30 minutes for frostbite to kick in when the wind chill is -19 degrees F. Wear mittens or gloves and a hat to prevent body heat loss. Shivering is the first sign that you are already losing body heat, which can result in hypothermia. If you’re cold enough to start shivering, take shelter indoors.
Know the Signs
If you suspect you have hypothermia or frostbite, seek medical attention immediately. Symptoms of hypothermia include shivering, exhaustion, confusion, memory loss, slurred speech, and drowsiness. Frostbite causes a loss of color and feeling in fingers, toes, nose, ears, cheeks, and chin. You might have frostbite if you experience numbness; flushed grey, white, blue, or yellowish skin; or, a waxy feeling to your skin.
Another way to protect yourselves at home is to make sure your heating system is in top working condition. So if your system hasn’t been professionally cleaned and inspected in a year or more, why not call Baylor Heating, Air & Plumbing today to help prevent anything going wrong with your furnace or boiler at those times you need it the most.