Thermal imaging cameras remind us why it’s important to bundle up

SHARON, Pa. (WYTV) – You’ve heard meteorologists say it all winter — “make sure you bundle up before heading outside.” But why? And how fast can your body lose heat in these cold temperatures?

When it’s this cold, your fingers and even parts of your face start to lose heat within minutes.

33 WYTV News Reporter Lindsey Watson visited the Sharon Fire Department Wednesday to put that to the test.

The stark contrast between hot and cold can be seen through the firefighters’ thermal imaging cameras.

The cameras make it easier for fire crews to find hot spots or people in a burning building.

“This will see through the smoke and what it does is it gives you a temperature difference,” Capt. Mike Unrue said. “It reads those differences and puts them into a format you can see visually.”

For this particular demonstration, WYTV used the device to see just how much heat our bodies lose when we come from the inside where it’s warm to the bitter cold outside.

With a little help from Sharon firefighter volunteers, we tested the body heat of a handprint on a fire truck.

The cameras use temperature contrast, meaning everything that’s hot shows up as a lighter color and everything that’s cold is a darker shade.

“Your cold environments or cooler objects will show up as gray or black and your hottest ones will show up as a bright white,” Unrue said.

The best advice emergency officials have is if you don’t have to go outside, it’s best to just stay in, where it’s warm.