MINNEAPOLIS -- Not that hearty Minnesotans need a reminder about just how cold it can get, but stories like Joe Cole's happen every year.
"I just hear a lot of stories about people dying of frostbite in two hours, and I was out there for eight," said Cole who is recovering from frostbite at Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis.
He was enjoying a New Year's celebration when he left his friend's house to go home. Cole said all he had on that night was a long sleeve shirt, no hat, no mittens and not prepared to be out in the cold for more than a few minutes, he would spend the entire night outside.
"It's all frostbite," he explained as nurses bandaged his injuries which run from his neck nearly down to his toes.
With a weekend of cold and below zero weather ahead, HCMC doctors said when the temp drops, frostbite cases rise.
"Whenever we're hitting a weekend when the temperatures are dipping we're always worried people are going to go out do some drinking and because they do make a good decision not to drink and drive they walk home, but they're not properly dressed," said Dr. Anne Lambert.
"I was one of those guys that always would just wear a sweatshirt, and be like well I'm going to be okay, 'cause I'm in a car so there will be heat," said Cole, who added. "But what if the car breaks down."
It's those what-ifs even on a warmer Minnesota winter day that Cole has learned can leave a lasting impression.
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