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'Arctic outbreak' to bring below-freezing temperatures to Cumberland County this week

2013-01-21T16:55:00Z 2013-01-22T07:18:40Z 'Arctic outbreak' to bring below-freezing temperatures to Cumberland County this weekBy Andrew Carr, The Sentinel The Sentinel
January 21, 2013 4:55 pm  • 

Temperatures are expected to fall into the single digits over the next few days with wind chill at less than Zero.

Ryan Coyle, meteorologist with abc27, says temperatures will remain in the teens to 20s throughout most of the week.

Temperatures Tuesday are expected to reach only 20 degrees, and are expected to reach that for only an hour or two around 3 or 4 p.m., which is the warmest part of the day, he said. “Most of the day, temperatures will remain in the single digits,” he said.

Lows are expected to be in the single digits overnight into Wednesday and Wednesday’s high is set at 22 degrees. Coyle said the rest of the week will look much like these days, with temperatures in the 20s through Saturday.

Temperatures in the area will experience will be colder than last year and are a result of an “Arctic outbreak.”

“The Arctic air is going to be here throughout the week,” he said. “Mother nature always seems to balance herself out.”

While such temperatures seem to be a drastic change from the highs in the 50s the area experienced lately, Coyle said it is not abnormal for this time of year, he said.

“This is the coldest time of year for us annually to begin with,” he said. “The record for this time of year is in the negatives, so this cold weather is not abnormal.”

Coyle suggested residents bundle up and try to avoid showing too much exposing skin, as frostbite can affect such areas quickly.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said health problems can arise when temperatures drop below normal, wind speeds increase and heat leaves the body more quickly. The CDC said the risk of hypothermia increases when temperatures turn dangerously cold. Victims often include the elderly who don’t have proper heating or clothing, babies who are in cold bedrooms, children left unattended, people who drink alcohol or do drugs and people who are outdoors for long periods of time — homeless, hikers, hunters, etc.

The warning signs of hypothermia are shivering, exhaustion, confusion, memory loss, slurred speech, drowsiness and fumbling hands in adults and very low energy and bright red, cold skin in infants, the CDC said.

Should any of these signs come up and a person’s temperature is below 95 degrees, the CDC recommends the person get immediate medical attention. The person affected should be moved into a warm room or shelter, wrapped in a blanket (including the head and neck) and have be given drink warm drinks to help increase the body temperature. No one should attempt to give drinks to an unconscious person or give them alcohol, the CDC said.

Otherwise, the CDC recommends everyone have plenty of food, water and medicine stored should the power go out or the water pipes freeze and rupture. Other emergency supplies for the winter include an alternate way of heating the home during a power failure, plenty of blankets, first-aid kit, battery-powered radio and clock, extra batteries, electric space heater with automatic shut-off switch and any special needs items, including diapers and medications.

Copyright 2015 The Sentinel. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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