BECKLEY - Subzero temperatures did not keep everyone inside on Tuesday. Public servants in Raleigh County bundled up and headed outside. Their jobs in the record cold weather make sure the rest of us stay safe.
Board of Public Works street inspector, Jerry Stump, said, “It's just something you have to deal with and work in and try to handle it the best you can. Situations where emergency vehicles and crews, which we really are here, have to get out and do the work to be able to make it safe for everybody else to get out. It's just what you have to do.”
Although many schools and other businesses were closed on Tuesday in Raleigh County due to the frigid temperatures, public servants, like the workers at Jan-Care, said they still had to show up. They said the important thing is dressing in layers, wearing gloves and something to cover your ears.
“Not only are our patients exposed to this weather, but our responders are as well so we have to dress appropriately. We have to wear gloves, multiple layers, coats; it’s a risk to us as well,” said Jan-Care paramedic Bradley Hughes.
People who have to get back and forth to their places of work on foot, said they also follow the layer rule.
“Yes, I have 2 shirts on under this, the hoodie and a jacket, a hat and then a hood for that and 2 pairs of pants actually... well not jeans but another pair of pants on under these so it helps a lot. Plus two pairs of socks, because you're feet are going to get wet fast because it's all slush next to the roads if you're walking,” said Beckley resident, George Brown.
Even officials that have lived here awhile said these conditions are the worst they have seen in recent years, and nobody can be totally immune to this weather.
“I've been here 36 years so it's gotten pretty cold before, but last 4/5 year this is about as cold as its got... so you never get used to it, not the extreme cold like that,” said Stump.