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Bell Ambulance says cold weather calls have been down in 24 hours

NOW: Bell Ambulance says cold weather calls have been down in 24 hours

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Bell Ambulance is ready to respond to cold-weather emergencies.

This week first responders are wearing ski masks, snow pants and extra layers. The gear is outside their normal uniform but needed to keep warm.

"The cots have these really thick cot quilts on them. We just make sure we're fully stocked and ready to go for the day. We've got a bunch of extra hot pads in every ambulance," said Justin Malueg, Bell Ambulance.

Malueg says snowfall earlier in the week led to a number of car crashes and slips and falls, but they haven't gotten as many calls during the deep freeze.

"Over the last day or so people have kind of hunkered down and have really taken it serious, that it is this cold outside," said Malueg.

Malueg says it seems the public has heeded the warning to stay indoors and he believes they would be called to more emergencies if government, businesses and schools were not closed.

They have responded to some cases of frostbite.

"We've gotten a couple over the past day or so. Some people that were outside had some swelling in their hands, mild cases of frostbite," said Malueg.

Bell ambulance says all skin should be covered, including cheeks and nose, to prevent frostbite. Toes, fingers and your nose are all very susceptible places to get frostbite, and in wind chills of -50, it can set in after just a couple minutes.

It is also important to drink plenty of water. Things like shivering can take a lot of energy and dehydration can set in pretty quick.

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