Or at least that what it feels like. With this “Polar Vortex” Coming through, it is absolutely the coldest it has ever been for a Canadian Winter. I believe the news even stated “Coldest temperatures in 9 years”
The last 3 days being -35 Celcius with a wind chill making it feel like -48!
We got 20 Centimeters of snow over the weekend which made for one heck of a chore to shovel the walks. My dog enjoyed it tho, he always loves playing in the snow and running around. But at times -35 was even too cold for this winter loving dog.
The general public has an idea that the worse the weather is, the busier the ambulance service is. That might be true in some areas, but here I find that not being the case at all. The worse the weather is, snow storm, rainstorm, Polar Vortex, our call volume decreases. Everyone wants to stay inside where its warm, and safe. But that being said, that not always the case.
At midnight, -35 with a biting -10 wind chill we get paged out to a residence for someone who was reportedly having “Behaviour Issues” this gentlemen was known to us, having previous behaviour/psych issues in the past.
We meet him at the door by RCMP, And greets us politely, “Sorry to being you out here, I didn’t really call for you guys, I was just on then phone with Health Link and they called you.” (Health Link is our 811 phone number where people can call in for medical advice, good in theory but 95 percent of the time tell people to just hang up and call 911)
“I’m an old man, I haven’t heard a female voice in so long” he says.
Out of all days he calls because hes lonely…the coldest day in 9 years.
The next day, snow fell overnight, the roads were slick, the sky was clear, still -30 out.
We get called for an Motor Vehicle Collision, a Semi Truck rear ended a 5 ton pickup truck which was allowed down turning right on a split secondary highway.
The 5 ton was spun around, in the ditch and laying on its side with 2 occupants.
We were 15 minutes away.
Luckily when we got there, all involved were out and walking around with minimal to no injuries.
We had 3 ambulances respond , several RCMP and the fire department. 3 of them were taken in for assessment but were released that day. On days like this had the accident been more severe the patients had a very real chance of suffering from hypothermia and severe frostbite before we would even arrive. Luckily bystanders witnessed the accident and kept them warm in their own vehicle before we arrived.
Winter driving is dangerous. You would think being Canadian where its winter driving 8 months out of the year, you would know to be more careful. People are always in a hurry, driving to fast on winter roads, texting and driving, tailgating, all which I’m sure to some extent played a factor in this incident.
Dont speed on winter roads. Dont fallow to close to the vehicle ahead of you. 2 easy steps would have prevented this from happening in the first place.
Stay warm out there.