EMSA: Stay safe as colder temperatures sweep across Oklahoma

(Photo by Angela WEISS / AFP)

(Photo by Angela WEISS / AFP)

OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – As colder temperatures are set to flood into the Sooner State for the new year, EMSA paramedics are warning residents to take precautions for the cold weather.

Officials say you should make sure you are wearing proper clothing, including multiple warm layers of clothing, hats, gloves, and sturdy shoes.

You should also limit your time outdoors.

If you can, you should consider checking on your neighbors, family, and friends to make sure they have transportation and adequate heating in their homes.

If you are using a space heater, make sure it is not too close to anything flammable like curtains, blankets, or bedding. Also, never use outdoor grills, gas ovens, or propane heaters indoors to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning and fires.

EMSA offered the following tips to people who will be out in the cold:

  • When possible, try to work in an area sheltered from the wind.
  • Dress appropriately. Wear at least three layers of clothing: an outer layer to break the wind and allow some ventilation (like gortex or nylon); a middle layer of wool, down, or synthetic pile to absorb sweat and retain insulating properties when wet; and an inner layer of cotton or synthetic weave to allow ventilation and escape of perspiration.
  • Layer clothing to create air pockets that help retain body heat. Layering also makes adapting to changes in weather and level of physical exertion easier.
  • Keep a change of clothing available in case your work clothes get wet. If your clothes get wet, you should try to change into dry clothes as soon as possible.
  • Pay special attention to protecting your feet, hands, head, and face. Your head should be covered (up to 40% of your body heat can be lost when your head is exposed). Fingers and hands lose their dexterity at temperatures below 59°F. Find gloves that will allow you to perform the tasks you need to perform and remember to put dry gloves on if your gloves get wet.
  • Wear boots or shoes that protect against cold and dampness. Footwear needs be insulated and fit comfortably with several layers of socks.
  • Avoid wearing dirty or greasy clothing because they have poor insulating properties and will allow you to get cold faster than clean clothing.

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