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Emergency responders caution exposure to cold

Exposure to extremely cold temperatures raises concerns for hypothermia and other health issues, according to the Columbia Fire Department.

ABC 17’s Barry Mangold worked with the department in attempt to measure the effects of cold weather on vital readings. Crews measured Mangold’s heart rate, blood pressure and blood oxygen percentage before and after he ran for 10 minutes outside.

After the run, crews found that all three readings worsened.

If you have bad circulation you need to be extra careful about getting too cold, according to Assistant Chief Brad Frazier.

“The elderly and the young are more susceptible to [catching hypothermia],” Frazier said. “It doesn’t take long when it’s this cold out… It can take over pretty quickly if you’re not dressed appropriately, or if you have poor circulation.”

If you need to be outside Frazier recommends periodically going inside to warm up. He said it is important to avoid prolonged exposure to extremely cold temperatures.

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