Stay Warm, Donate Blood During Cold Snap

The American Red Cross has issued tips to stay safe during extreme cold.

Monday morning's warm rain melted the snow, but temperatures are expected to dip as low as single digits overnight, continuing into a very cold Tuesday. 

The wind chill is expected to be especially rough, making it feel as low as 10 degrees below zero, according to the National Weather Service.  

The American Red Cross has issued the following tips to stay safe during the extreme cold:

  • Wear layers of lightweight clothing to stay warm. Gloves and a hat will help prevent losing body heat.
  • Seek medical attention immediately (for) symptoms of hypothermia, including confusion, dizziness, exhaustion and severe shivering.
  • Watch for symptoms of frostbite, including numbness, flushed gray, white, blue or yellow skin discoloration, numbness, or waxy feeling skin.
  • Don’t forget family pets – bring them indoors. If they can’t come inside, make sure they have enough shelter to keep them warm and that they can get to unfrozen water.
  • Avoid frozen pipes - run water, even at a trickle, to help prevent them from freezing. Open the kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing. Be sure to move any harmful cleaners and household chemicals out of the reach of children. Keep the garage doors closed if there are water lines in the garage. Keep the thermostat at the same temperature day and night to help avoid freezing pipes.
  • Download the free Red Cross First Aid App for quick, expert advice on what to do in case of an emergency. 
Additionally, the cold has caused a shortage of blood, as 125 Red Cross blood drives in 17 states have been canceled due to the weather, according to a press release from the American Red Cross.

"Despite the weather, hospital patients across the country will still need blood," the release said. "Please consider making an appointment to donate blood or platelets when it is safe to do so in your area."

To make an appointment to donate blood, call 1-800-RED-CROSS or visit redcrossblood.org.


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