You might want to avoid spending the cold weather days of January and February in the hot and humid air force jets and submarine submarines of the Canadian Armed Forces.
The cold and damp conditions can be dangerous for submariners and sailors, who are exposed to deadly gases, including hypothermia, carbon monoxide and even chlorine.
“They are a little bit like being in a hot tub,” said Mike Poulin, a submariner who has spent the last six years with the CFB Trenton.
Poulin said the frigid air conditions are often a problem on the submarine, which operates in cold, foggy waters that often have very little air flow.
“The cold is a killer,” he said.
“If you can’t breathe it, the pressure is going to kill you.
And it’s not a fun situation to be in.”
The frigid conditions have become a problem for submariner and sailor Chris McQueen.
He has spent six years on the frigids submarine.
“I would say the cold is pretty much like being on a hot-tub,” he told the National Post.
“You’re kind of just hanging around with the people and just trying to stay in the right place.”
The cold weather conditions also make life more difficult for the submariners.
“The submariners have to be really, really careful because they are working under extremely high temperatures and pressure, which is why you don’t get much exercise,” said McQueen, a crew chief with the Trenton submarine.
The frigids are operated by the Canadian Forces.
But the CFBs have to do all the heavy lifting.
“You have to run a huge ship and you have to maintain the ship for months,” said Poullin.
Aircraft are also at risk.
The Trenton aircraft are used by the CF-18 Hornets, and the Trentons planes are also used by many other Canadian military aircraft, including the CFN and the Royal Canadian Air Force.
“It’s not the kind of situation that a pilot can just put a couple of guys in a plane, and fly,” said retired CF-19 pilot Chris Gendron.
“If you’re flying an aircraft that’s about 150,000 feet above the surface, you can expect to have very high temperatures.”
The CFB is not the only Canadian military that has problems with the frigidity.
The Canadian Coast Guard also has a cold-weather gear policy.
The policy is enforced by a commander, not a crew member, but the crew can request a gear change if the weather is bad enough.
The Trenton submarines are equipped with a water-cooled watertight system that helps to keep the aircraft warm.
But this system can also get dangerously cold in the frigates.
The weather conditions can also be dangerous on the planes.
“They have the best ventilation system, but if they are in the humid climate of the cold months, they can be very cold,” said Tom Macdonald, a retired captain with the Halifax and St. John’s aircraft.
“In cold weather, it’s a lot harder to breathe.
If you can get your lungs working, you’re going to be OK.”
McQueen, who also runs a personal injury law practice in Ottawa, said the cold air and humidity can be particularly dangerous in the air tank.
“There’s the air tanks, and there’s the engine, and then there’s probably a bit of the propeller as well,” he explained.
“So if you’re on a plane that’s on the outside of the air, it can be pretty hot.
If the air is hot, it might not be so hot.
It’s a pretty dangerous situation.”
McQuay says the crew needs to be aware of the conditions and be prepared to change planes during the cold winter months.
“When you’re in an aircraft, the pilot needs to know what’s going on, and what the equipment is,” he added.
“It’s really important to be able to do everything you need to do to make sure you don.t get yourself hurt.”