Monday, February 3, 2014

Punxsatawney Phil Hits the Snooze Button and Calls for More Cold Weather

By Jessica McEntee, Communication Intern

It looks like six more weeks of winter according to the Punxsatawney Groundhog. Just yesterday morning, Squiggy's Sciuridae family member awoke from hibernation, crawled out of Gobbler's Knob, and saw his shadow, essentially hitting the snooze button for more wintery weather - and groundhog sleep.

As the frigid cold continues, make sure to keep these important facts in mind:
  • Watch out for wind chill! It's the combination of freezing temperatures and cold wind and can increase chances of frostbite on exposed skin.
  • Help prevent frozen pipes in your home by opening cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate. Also, in severe freezing temperatures (below zero), let cold water drip through the faucet. 
  • Check smoke alarms! With the increased use of fireplaces, stoves, and furnaces, make sure to check smoke alarms and replace old batteries.
  • Protect yourself from the sun. Even in winter, you can get sunburn due to  intense UV rays and the glare off of white snow. If you're planning on being outside for a few hours, apply a layer of sunscreen to exposed skin. 
  • Layer up! Wear layers, and many of them, to stay warmer. Wearing one large coat is not as effective in conserving body heat unless you layer clothing underneath. 
With winter staying around for another month or two, it's important to prepare despite the upcoming transition to spring. Cold temperature can continue into the new season, so stay prepared through the Red Cross

If the cold has you stuck indoors, don't get bored! Learn more about Phil and the science and folklore behind weather predicting. 

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