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During the winter months, keeping toasty warm is more than just a matter of comfort—when you’re outdoors, it can be a matter of life or death. Watch out for these two hazards of freezing weather:

  • Frostbite. Freezing of body tissues can cause permanent loss of feeling and movement in affected areas and may require amputation of the affected limb. A less serious condition, frostnip, can usually be reversed by rubbing the affected areas to warm them, but don’t do that for frostbite victims. Their limbs need to be heated quickly with blankets and warm (not hot) water, preferably in a hospital. Frostbite usually affects the nose, ears, cheeks, chin, fingers, or toes. Symptoms include white or grayish-yellow skin, numbness, and a firm, waxy feeling when touching the affected skin.
  • Hypothermia. Loss of body heat due to prolonged exposure to the cold can impair movement and rational thinking. Someone with severe hypothermia may appear unconscious or even dead, but CPR can keep the victim alive until medical aid arrives. If you must move the victim, handle him or her gently. If medical attention isn’t immediately available, warm the center of the body first (chest, neck, and groin) with an electric blanket if available. Symptoms of hypothermia include extreme shivering and exhaustion, confusion, slurred speech, memory loss, and extreme drowsiness.

Always take these common-sense precautions when going outdoors in cold weather:

  • Dress in layers. Clothing should be warm, loose, and dry, made of cotton or wool. Your top layer should be waterproof.
  • Cover your critical areas. You can lose up to 40 percent of your body heat if you don’t adequately cover your head, face, hands, and feet.
  • Stay dry. If you get wet, dry off or change clothes immediately.
  • Keep moving. You’ll keep warmer if you’re walking or staying active.

The Weimer Group is a firm of proven professionals, caring and conscientious people; the kind of people you can depend on. With offices in Perkasie and Harleysville we are here to help you tailor a snowmobile insurance plan that protects you and your passenger and is offered at a competitive price. Contact us today!

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