Frigid temperatures affect health and expenses - KOTA Territory News

Frigid temperatures affect health and expenses

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The frigid week continues for Sheridan and much of KOTA Territory. The mercury dropped all the way to a record low of 28 below zero early this morning. So it is important to layer up if you go outside.

"With the extreme cold you're definitely at increased risk for exposure-related conditions such as hypothermia and frostbite," said Dr. Hannah hall with Big Horn Mountain Medicine.

And doctors say it doesn't take long for symptoms to pop up.

"Being outside 15, 20 minutes, you're at risk for frostbite. Same thing with hypothermia. It takes a little bit longer for that," said Hall.

So stay inside as much as possible. But make sure the heat works.

"When systems are ramping up in the morning and trying to make up for maybe the thermostat turned down at night, belts break because they're cold. Motors don't like it when it's cold. Things freeze up," said Ken Thorpe, the manager at Powder River Heating and Air Conditioning.

On days like this Powder River Heating may get up to 100 calls before 9:00 a.m. between its three locations in Sheridan, Buffalo, and Gillette.

"Typically we only have maybe 10 to 15 to 20. And so for instance yesterday I had a guy work 22 hours," said Thorpe.

But if the heat works and the family is staying in all day, expect to see a big increase in your energy bills.

"I don't know about you but I'm not going out of the house much so I'm watching more TV, I'm using my computer more, I'm probably cooking more," said Kristin Kelly, communications specialist for Powder River Energy Corporation. "Every electronic in your house has to work doubly hard."

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