Prepare Now: Polar Plunge Harsher Than Last 2 Winter Storms To Threaten Human Life

January 26, 2014

The Gulf coast braces for snow and closures. Snow up the three inches is predicted along with school and other closures including flight cancellations along the Gulf coast region:

“While the rare snow will be a welcome sight for children and those young at heart, this will be a major winter storm for the I-10 corridor and the eastern Carolinas,” Accu Weather says.
“Residents and travelers should prepare for significant disruptions. This includes motorists planning to travel on Interstates 10, 40, 45, 65, 75 and 95.”

A polar plunge with harsher conditions than frigid winter storns earlier this January, that broke records, is arriving early this week. It’s bringing coldest daytime highs and nighttime lows so far this winter and threatening far-reaching frostbite, hypothermia and water main breaks, according to meteorologists Sunday.

“The magnitude of this cold blast will be enough to produce a far-reaching threat of frostbite, hypothermia, frozen pipes and water main breaks,” AccuWeather reports Sunday.

While harsh cold is returning to the Midwest and Northeast this weekend, Accuweather says the cold blast this weekend ”will pale in comparison” to what’s coming Monday through Wednesday.

“Biting winds will usher in the frigid air, creating dramatically colder temperatures. Where snow is covering the ground, the winds will worsen the situation for motorists by blowing and drifting the snow.”

Grand Forks, N.D., will bottom out at around 30 below zero and across most of the Northeast, highs will be held to single digits and teens Tuesday and Wednesday.

Human skin will freeze in just a few minutes in the conditions expected this week.

People in the upper northwest and northeast are advised to prepare now.

Alcohol and freezing storm conditions don’t mix, a less discussed precaution: Do not consume alcohol if stuck in frigid conditions or heading into it for unavoidable reason.

While drinking makes us feel warmer, the truth is that it can actually result in death. Alcohol is a quick way to die from hypothermia.

Mythbusters explains that alcohol may make your skin feel warm, but this feeling of a heat wave is deceptive. A nip or two actually causes blood vessels to dilate, moving warm blood closer to the surface of your skin, making you feel warmer temporarily. At the same time, however, those same blood vessels pumping blood closer to the skin’s surface cause loss of core body heat – heat needed to survive, especially if stuck in a snowdrift.

“If you go out in the cold after drinking, because you’ve got a lot of heat on the periphery of your body, you can lose heat very easily and quickly. And that can be dangerous,” says Professor Colin Drummond, head of the Section of Alcohol Research at King’s College London. “That takes blood and heat away from the core of your body. So while it feels like you’re warm because your skin is warm, your vital organs aren’t as warm as you might think they are.”

Drinking heavily and then venturing out into arctic conditions, the faulty internal thermometer along with the dulling of senses and bravado that alcohol can create, can spell trouble.

“Drinking too much leads to bad decisions,” says Prof Drummond. “If you drunkenly decide to walk home across a snowy field instead of getting a taxi, you’re putting yourself at risk. Hypothermia can take hold quickly and can even lead to death.”

For this reason, if one sees a homeless person or youth out in these extreme conditions, it is better to reach out and help or to call a friend or 911 for help.

Other precautions

Public Alerts advises taking the following precautions to survive brutally frigid conditions:

  • Avoid overexertion when shoveling snow. Overexertion can result in heart attack – a major cause of death in the winter. If you must shovel snow, stretch before going outside.
  • Stay dry. Change wet clothing frequently to prevent a loss of body heat. Wet clothing loses all of its insulating value and transmits heat rapidly.
  • Watch for frostbite signs: loss of feeling and white or pale appearance in extremities such as fingers, toes, ear lobes, and the tip of the nose. If symptoms are detected, get medical help immediately.
  • Conserve fuel, if necessary, by keeping your residence cooler than normal. Temporarily close off heat to some rooms.

The Red Cross says being prepared for winter storms includes knowing the difference between public announcements:

  • Winter Storm Outlook – Winter storm conditions are possible in the next 2 to 5 days.
  • Winter Weather Advisory – Winter weather conditions are expected to cause significant inconveniences and may be hazardous. When caution is used, these situations should not be life threatening.
  • Winter Storm Watch – Winter storm conditions are possible within the next 36 to 48 hours. People in a watch area should review their winter storm plans and stay informed about weather conditions. 

http://beforeitsnews.com/alternative/2014/01/prepare-now-polar-plun...

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