Despite cold, Detroiters carry on

By Shawn Ley - Reporter

DETROIT - It's a great day to stay inside, but some metro Detroiters are still out braving the bitter cold.

Imagine if you had to work in the cold.

In Royal Oak, firefighters battled a house fire in below freezing temperatures.

The water from their hoses was even warmer than the frigid air.

Fire Chief Chuck Thomas said his crews were doing their best, even with the added weight of the chill.

"You can see they're getting weaker, their faces are red, they are sweating. We need to rotate the men," he said.

Check: Recalled cold weather products

If you don't work out in the cold, one of the coldest things you may do is fill up at the pump or wait for a bus.

SMART bus driver Rodney Halloway ended his shift early Tuesday morning and was getting gas at the BP on Michigan Avenue at Wyoming.

Halloway has a cold job, opening the bus door for passengers getting on. 

"It sucks all the heat right out of the bus," he said.

Ramon Hollis was on the other end, waiting for a bus to get to school. He said the cold was making his eyes water.

But one man Local 4 found paying for gas had only a fleece sweatshirt on. "It's Michigan," he said.

Others were layered up for the day with long underwear, extra shirts, fleece jackets and hoodies.

Some workers have to be outside all day.

"We always wear extra clothes and we than wear like hand warmers and foot warmer," said Fred Brown who works outside in the cold.

Gloves are always a must.

For some workers being cold is part of the job. Marlin Henderson works at U.S Ice Company. He has to work outside and he works inside where it's cold.

"I got my coat on, so got gloves on. Once I get home I get warm," said Henderson.

The cold is especial hard on pets who have no control on their environment.

"Dogs that are under weight, that are old, that are small, that have a short hair coat are in a lot of danger outside when the temperatures are this low," said Deborah MacDonald from the Michigan Humane Society.

Rescue workers are out today keeping on eye on animals outside.

"Well they don't have shelter, they are in good shape, but they need some dog houses. It's way to cold to be out here without any kind of shelter," said Humane Society worker Mark Remos after finding a pair of dogs outside. "So were going to check back on this later in the day and see if we can't catch somebody at home. If not we'll see about trying to get them out of here," he said.

The Michigan Humane Society is giving out free straw for pets at the MHS Detroit Center for Animal Care, located at 7401 Chrysler Drive.

Straw can be picked up any time during adoption center hours from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays, and from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Wednesdays.

While the Local 4 crews were out in the cold, they said it only took about two minutes for their fingers and toes to start feeling very cold, after four minutes exposed skin, like faces became red. 

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