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Winter Weather

It's friggin cold out, so here's a few ways to stave off death

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BY KARALINE COHEN

TOLEDO, Ohio (CIRCA via WNWO) - February in most of the country brings about cold temperatures and snow. If you're not careful while outside, this weather could put you in the hospital.

"This has definitely been one of the colder winters I could remember, I’ve been working outside in the parking lots since 2002," said Ben Rumpf, a Toledo resident.

It's a typical February in Toledo. But when does cold become too cold?

"It can take 15 to 20 minutes of having that body spot exposed where we can see frostbite develop," said Lt. Zakariya Reed, with Toledo Fire & Rescue.

Pair these cold conditions with that breeze at your back, and it becomes dangerous.

"That becomes a concern when we have people exposed, especially if they don't have a hat on, gloves, or proper shoes," Reed said.

Your body will start showing symptoms that are associated with getting too cold.

"It starts with becoming hypothermic, we might have someone become clumsy, or slur your speech," Reed said.

These symptoms can be a sign of frostbite or hypothermia.

"Damage to the soft tissue, we might have ice particles grow on the exposed skin," Reed said.

Reed said you need to be prepared before you head outside. This means dressing in warm layers and continuing to move around so you’re active and get the blood moving.

“Pretty much all winter I wear long johns as a base layer,” said Rumpf. “I usually wear a hoodie, jacket, sometimes two jackets, hat and gloves.”

The most important areas to cover up are your head, face, fingers and toes. Those parts of the body have limited blood flow.

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