People and organizations have to deal with cold (working) environments. It is therefore important to keep the body warm to prevent unsafe situations and health problems. But when do we talk about cold? And what factors play a role in this? You can read more about this in this blog.
What is Cold?
The human body can only function properly if the body temperature is around 37°C. If the body can no longer maintain the temperature, this has major consequences for health. At a temperature below 35ºC, there is talk of hypothermia
- A body temperature below 33 °C reduces consciousness and increases the risk of accidents.
- At a body temperature below 30 °C there is a risk of cardiac arrhythmia.
Hypothermia can lead to permanent health damage. Every year people end up in the hospital and die from hypothermia.
At an ambient temperature below 15 °C, the hands can no longer be used properly and protective clothing must already be available. This is annoying and can be dangerous due to less accuracy.
What Causes Cold?
Not only the temperature says something about cold, the air movement (draft or wind) also plays an important role. Air movement allows moist skin to cool down more strongly or blows away the air insulation layer through the clothing. This cools the body extra. In this case it is better not to talk about the air temperature but about the perceived temperature. The apparent temperature can be calculated using standardized methods such as the Wind chill index . See an overview in the image below.
The stated wind chill applies to a healthy, adult and walking person of average height. The apparent temperature is calculated from a combination of the air temperature and the average wind speed.
The sun plays no role in the calculation method. But in sunny weather it feels less cold than the calculated wind chill suggests. It also feels less cold when you walk with the wind at your back.