The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Local News

January 6, 2014

ALERT: Warming center now open in Athens

Check family, neighbors for signs of hypothermia

ATHENS — Officials believe temperatures today though Wednesday in Athens and Limestone County will be the coldest in 20 years.

Be advised that at warming station has been created at First United Methodist Church in the Beasley Center at the corner of Bryan and Marion streets in Athens. Hours are Sunday night through 8 a.m. Wednesday morning. There will be food and drinks available through the cooperation of other mission teams and organizations. Those without adequate heat should go to this location. If you are in need you are welcome there.

For more information, call 256-232-2020. 

Hypothermia

Please check on your neighbors during this cold snap. Hypothermia can be deadly and can occur if the temperature in your home or apartment falls below 68 degrees.

According to the National Institute on Aging, even if you keep your temperature between 60 and 65 degrees, your home or apartment may not be warm enough to keep you safe. For some people, this temperature can contribute to hypothermia. This is a special problem if you live alone because there is no one else to feel the chilliness of the house or notice if you are having symptoms of hypothermia. Set your thermostat for at least 68 and 70 degrees. If a power outage leaves you without heat, try to stay with a relative or friend.

Symptoms of hypothermia

How do you know if someone has hypothermia? Look for the "umbles"—stumbles, mumbles, fumbles,and grumbles—these show that the cold is a problem, according to NIA. Check for:

  • Confusion or sleepiness
  • Slowed, slurred speech, or shallow breathing
  • Weak pulse
  • Change in behavior or in the way a person looks
  • A lot of shivering or no shivering; stiffness in the arms or legs
  • Poor control over body movements or slow reactions.

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