The extreme cold weather alert has been lifted for the Niagara region, though residents are reminded to still use the proper precaution to protect their health in the cold.
The Niagara Region provides this list of tips to stay warm:
- Stay in heated buildings as much as possible.
- Dress appropriately and cover exposed skin.
- Wear gloves, mittens and a scarf to protect the chin, lips, and cheek. Exposed skin can become frostbitten in 30 seconds.
- Wear a Hat. Up to 40 per cent of body heat loss can occur through the head.
- The Canadian Paediatric Society recommends keeping children indoors if the temperature falls below -25 C, or if the wind chill is -28 C or less.
- Drink warm fluids but avoid caffeinated or alcoholic beverages. Alcohol and caffeine cause the body to lose heat more rapidly.
- Wear clothes in layers: inner layer, middle layer and outer layer.
- Keep moving.
- Take shelter from the wind. This can reduce wind chill exposure.
- Use caution when shovelling snow, especially for those that have heart, respiratory problems or other medical conditions. Snow shovelling is strenuous and can cause an onset of heart or respiratory problems.
- Check on neighbours who may be at risk.
- Know symptoms and when to get help.
- Hypothermia symptoms include: shivering, exhaustion, confusion, fumbling/uncoordinated movements, memory loss, slurred speech, drowsiness.
- Frostbite symptoms include: white or greyish skin area; skin that feels unusually firm or waxy or numbness.
- Seek medical attention if you experience the symptoms of hypothermia or frostbite.
The Region issues extreme cold alerts when temperatures fall below -15 C or when weather conditions are severe enough to warrant alerting the community to the risks involved with prolonged exposure to the outdoors, such as during blizzards and times of high wind chill.