What is Windchill?

The wind chill forecast gets as low as 35 below.  It would take less than 15 minutes for your exposed skin to become frost bitten.  

Here are some tips to stay safe from frostbite:

  • Wear layers of lose fitting lightweight clothes.
  • Water repellent and wind resistant jacket.
  • Wear a hood (most of your body heat escapes from your head).
  • Wear mittens instead of gloves.
  • Stay hydrated.
  • If hands or toes feel numb, rub them together. Although you may not be the best dressed person, you will be the warmest when the wind blows.
  • Watch for signs of frostbite. These include loss of feeling and white or pale appearance in extremities such as fingers, toes, ear lobes, and the tip of the nose. If symptoms are detected, get medical help immediately.

But what is windchill?

The NWS Windchill Temperature (WCT) index uses advances in science, technology, and computer modeling to provide an accurate, understandable, and useful formula for calculating the dangers from winter winds and freezing temperatures. The index:

  • Calculates wind speed at an average height of 5 feet, the typical height of an adult human face, based on readings from the national standard height of 33 feet, typical height of an anemometer.
  • Is based on a human face model.
  • Incorporates heat transfer theory: heat loss from the body to its surroundings, during cold and breezy/windy days.
  • Lowers the calm wind threshold to 3 mph.
  • Uses a consistent standard for skin tissue resistance.
  • Assumes no impact from the sun, i.e., clear night sky.

Pipes can also can frozen with temperatures this cold, click here to find out how to prevent that.

Thanks for reading!

-Meteorologist Kevin Arnone

You can tweet me using the handle @Kevin_Arnone. I’m also on Facebook, just friend me at: Meteorologist Kevin Arnone. You can follow my instagram page too, just search: MeteorologistKevinArnone

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