What does ‘wind chill’ mean?

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INDIANAPOLIS — With colder temperatures and winter on the way, you will likely hear meteorologists reference the “wind chill. But what exactly does that mean?

What is Happening

Our bodies naturally lose heat through convection. With little to no wind, a layer of that heat sticks around to help us stay warmer when it is cold outside.

However, when it is windy, the moving air breaks up the insulating warm layer. This helps to speed up heat loss and will make you feel colder.

Wind chill advisories mean that wind chill temperatures will drop cold enough to have a significant impact on your body.

Two Main Concerns: Frostbite and Hypothermia

Frostbite is the freezing of the skin and underlying tissues. The skin becomes red, numb, hard, and then pale. Hypothermia is when our body temperature drops below 95°F.

What You Can Do to Prepare

Dress in layers! Wear hats, gloves, scarves, long-sleeves, and thick socks. You want to cover as much skin as possible and limit your time outside.

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