HSHS St. Francis Hospital encourages everyone to stay safe in the winter weather this holiday season.  When recommended by local weather and safety experts, stay inside and off the roads.

The US Dept. of Homeland Security is offering the following safety tips as part of a national public service campaign designed to educate and empower everyone to prepare for, respond to and mitigate emergencies, including natural and man-made disasters. 

· If venturing outside is a must, dress warmly.

· Know the area’s risk for winter storms since severe storms can leave communities without utilities.

· Gather emergency supplies in case there is the chance there will be a few days without power

· Be sure to sign up for local weather alerts.

· To avoid carbon monoxide poisoning, only use generators and gas grills outside and away from windows.

· To reduce the risk of a heart attack, avoid overexertion when shoveling snow and take breaks when necessary.

· Be sure to check on the elderly and those with young children.  They are the most susceptible to the risks extreme cold brings.

· Frostbite and hypothermia are a few of the health-related risks the cold brings.

· Frostbite begins with the loss of feeling and color to the extremities.  Make sure to wear gloves and cover any exposed skin if it is necessary to venture outside.  Go to a warm place if frostbite occurs.

· Hypothermia occurs when the body temperature drops below 95° F.  Signs of hypothermia include: shivering, confusion, slurred speech, etc.

This year winter has started off as cold and snowy.  As weather experts expect this continued forecast through the winter, we encourage everyone to stay safe during winter storms by preparing ahead of time and knowing how to recognize and respond to some of the cold weather related health risks.

To learn more about winter safety involving slips, trips and falls visit: https://www.ready.gov/winter-weather.

Media Contact

Kelly Barbeau

Manager, Marketing & Communications
HSHS Illinois
Office: (618) 234-2120, Ext. 41270
kelly.barbaeu@hshs.org

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