Weather Service warns DC visitors

January 16, 2009 6:46:04 AM PST
The National Weather Service is warning anyone planning to attend the inauguration in Washington, D. C. that they need to be prepared for some very cold weather.It says the people outside on the National Mall will likely experience some of the coldest weather of the season. It's even set up a special website to get inaugural forecasts: http://weather.gov/inauguration

It's also offering some safety tips:

  • Dress in several layers of loose-fitting clothing to create pockets of insulating warm air.
  • Wear wool or fleece fabrics, not cotton as it dries slowly; warm socks with a thermal sock liner; comfortable, closed shoes; a scarf, hat and earmuffs to prevent loss of body heat; a water repellent, hooded outer garment to add extra protection; and mittens instead of gloves to keep hands warm.
  • Walk around or move in place to increase circulation and generate additional body heat.
  • Drink warm beverages.
  • Do not drink alcohol as it will cause a loss of body heat by dilating blood vessels.
  • Seek shelter indoors periodically to warm up.
  • Take extra precaution with the elderly and very young as they are most at-risk.

Cold Weather Dangers and Warning Signs:

  • Frostbite is damage to body tissue caused by exposure to extreme cold. Warning signs include a loss of feeling and a white or pale appearance in extremities, such as fingers, toes, ear lobes or the tip of the nose.
  • Hypothermia is a potentially fatal condition brought on when the body temperature drops to less than 95 degrees F. Warning signs include uncontrollable shivering, memory loss, disorientation, incoherence, slurred speech, drowsiness and apparent exhaustion.

If you experience any of the warning signs of frost bite or hypothermia, seek medical attention immediately.

If you're interested in the history of the weather on Inauguration Day, check out this website: http://www.erh.noaa.gov/lwx/Historic_Events/Inauguration/Inauguration.html


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