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Take Safety Precautions in the Snow, Ice
Date:2/2/2011

rovides both ventilation and insulation; a hat or other head covering; gloves or mittens; thick warm socks; and proper footwear.

"It takes only minutes for exposed skin to become frostbitten if the temperature falls below 20 degrees Fahrenheit and the wind is blowing at 20 miles per hour or more," AAOS spokesperson Dr. Rachel Rohde, an orthopedic surgeon at the William Beaumont Hospital in Michigan, said in the news release. "Your hands, fingers, feet, toes, and ears are especially susceptible, so you need to take special care protecting them."

Here are some more winter safety tips from the AAOS:

  • Check snow and ice conditions before heading out to take part in outdoor activities. Pay attention to news warnings about storms and severe drops in temperature.
  • Don't drink or smoke before going outside in the cold. Alcohol, nicotine and caffeine increase the risk of cold injury to the skin.
  • If you get wet, get inside as quickly as possible and remove your wet clothes.
  • Don't forget about frostbite, and check yourself every half-hour for signs. Go inside if your toes, fingers, ears or other parts of your body become numb.

More information

The U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency outlines how to prepare for a winter storm.

-- Robert Preidt

SOURCE: American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, news release, Feb. 1, 2011


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