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Jan 22

Yorkshire Air Ambulance (YAA) crew are urging people to stay warm this winter with a mug of hot chocolate to beat hypothermia and raise vital funds for their charity, with their annual YAA Hot Chocolate Fundraising Day, which takes place on Friday 28th January.

YAA is an independent Charity that needs to raise £12,000 every single day to keep both of Yorkshire’s air ambulances in the air and maintained.  The charity responds to more than 1,500 incidents every single year with the winter period being one of their busiest times.

For the last few years, the YAA has been marking National Hot Chocolate Day with a series of fundraising campaigns and events, helping to bring people together whilst raising awareness of the life-saving Charity and other topical issues.

January is one of the UK’s coldest months with an average temperature of only 7 degrees. The cold, wintery weather brings many seasonal dangers and can be a cause of many excess deaths every single year.

Hypothermia is when the body’s temperature drops below 35 degrees, paving way for potential cardiovascular and respiratory issues, amongst other conditions. Older people and the more vulnerable are considered most at risk, but hypothermia can affect anyone if the body gets too cold.

James Allen, HEMS Paramedic at Yorkshire Air Ambulance, said: “The effect the cold weather can have on the human body is often highly underestimated and hypothermia can be very dangerous. At this time of year, we attend many incidents where people are unequipped for the colder climate, particularly those hiking, biking or taking part in long walks. Additionally, patients that have been involved in road accidents tend to get cold very quickly at this time of year.  In cases of mild hypothermia a warm, sugary drink can in itself be a treatment. Especially in those patients that, as a result of a prolonged period of exposure, have depleted their glucose reserves and are at risk of developing more severe hypothermia.

In more serious cases our crew are able to bring heated blankets, an insulated sleeping bag and a storm shelter to protect the patient from the elements whilst we treat their injuries. For critically injured patients Yorkshire Air Ambulance carries blood that is warmed up to body temperature just prior to administration. Most crucially, YAA provides rapid transport from the scene of the incident to the hospital, where patients can be completely rewarmed. Prevention is, however, better than the cure and this campaign is a great way of highlighting the dangers of the cold weather and encouraging people to stay safe this winter.”

One of the best and most enjoyable ways to stay warm and hydrated is with a hot cup of cocoa. Yorkshire Air Ambulance’s Hot Chocolate fundraising day will take place on 28th January 2022 and the charity will be encouraging supporters to sign up and join them for a cup of hot chocolate, whilst learning about the vital work the charity does 365 days a year across Yorkshire.

The YAA has issued an awareness video about hypothermia and the risks of cold weather, and there will also be a virtual event where you can learn more about the dangers with ITV Calendar’s Meteorologist and YAA Patron, Jon Mitchell interviewing the crew. There will also be a chance to learn more about the charity through talks with Helicopter ER Producer Matt Richards, speaking about how they film the award-winning television show.

To register for the event or to take part in Yorkshire Air Ambulance’s hot chocolate day, please visit:https://www.yorkshireairambulance.org.uk/get-involved/events/yaa-events/yaa-hot-chocolate-day-2022/

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