(1) A standard number of layers of clothing cannot be prescribed for
universal wear throughout winter. Flexibility must be provided for local conditions.
Certain basic principles are important, including the ventilation of the body during
physical activity, the cleanliness and repair of clothing to prevent loss of insulation, and
the avoidance of constriction produced by snug fitting socks, boots, underwear,
sweaters, jackets, and trousers.
(2) Ground forces personnel in cold areas must be equipped with the
insulated rubber combat boots. Frequent change of socks is important with these boots
because of increased sweating and retention of sweat, followed by a lowered resistance
to immersion foot. Although sweating in these boots does not contribute to the loss of
insulation, it nevertheless leads to the softening of the soles of the feet by the retained
sweat. Damage to tissues, produced by walking, results in a loss of skin from the soles
of the feet which may require hospitalization. Cold injuries to the foot have been
reported when wearing this insulated boot. These injuries usually result from inactivity
and dependency of the foot, as occurs with prolonged sitting or standing without
frequent foot or leg movement.
(3) In all types of footgear, feet perspire more than other parts of the body.
Moisture accumulates in socks, decreasing their insulating quality. Because of this,
special foot and sock care is essential. Extra socks should be carried by all personnel.
Socks damp from perspiration will dry if carried unfolded inside the shirt. They should
be changed at least daily and washed whenever the opportunity permits. Socks and
other clothing soiled with dirt, grease, or salt from perspiration will conduct heat more
rapidly, thus affording less protection against the cold.
f. Guidelines in Use of Clothing.
(1) When working, remove excess layers of clothing before perspiration
starts, so that clothing does not become wet. Avoid wetting clothing or footgear, since
moisture causes a dramatic loss of insulating quality.
(2) Wear clothing and footgear loose enough to permit layers of air to
provide good insulation and to permit good circulation of blood to all parts of the body.
Avoid tight-fitting uniforms.
(3) Keep hands well protected; mittens are more protective than gloves.
Glove or mitten inserts that become wet should be removed and dried, or exchanged for
dry inserts as quickly as possible. Avoid lengthy exposure of bare hands and wrists that
will cause stiffening and reduce circulation, since it takes a long time to recondition the
hands to normal use. DO NOT TOUCH METAL, SNOW, OR OTHER COLD OBJECTS
WITH BARE HANDS. DO NOT SPILL GASOLINE ON SKIN OR CLOTHING.