College Student Could Lose Limbs After Passing Out on Freezing Porch
A 19-year-old sophomore from the University of Minnesota Duluth suffered severe hypothermia and could lose one or more limbs after spending a night passed out on a freezing porch in subzero temperatures with only a jacket and UGG boots to protect her from the frostbiting cold.
Alyssa Jo Lommel had reportedly been dropped off near her home after a night of drinking, and somehow ended up unconscious on a neighbor's porch.
Overnight temperatures in Duluth dropped to -17, with a wind chill around -36.
According to a statement by Duluth police, Lommel had been playing a drinking game with friends last Friday night, and in the process may have consumed over ten tequila shots.
The unidentified friend who drove Lommel home told officers that amount was "no more than usual" for Lommel, who was "a normal party chick."
The same man reported that Lommel "wasn't wasted" when he and others dropped her off around midnight. "She could talk. And she wasn't falling-down drunk," he said.
Nonetheless, Lommel's friends didn't stick around to watch her go inside. Nor did her roommates notice she was missing when they returned home a few hours later.
Lommel's footprints suggest she attempted to enter a parked car before ending up on the porch.
With her neighbors away, Lommel remained there for over nine hours until a passer-by reported her condition to the authorities.
Lommel was subsequently transported to two separate hospitals, and remains in stable but critical condition.
As Lommel was not wearing gloves, her hands swelled up to three times their normal size causing the skin to split.
Doctors are attempting to surgecially improve Lommel's blood flow in order to avoid having to amputate any of the affected limbs.
"It’s very much a wait-and-see thing at the moment," Lommel's mother Teri told a Gannett reporter. "We are hopeful that her body will heal itself."
The UMD Police Department has since released its own statement, urging students venturing outside to "travel in groups."
[screengrab via MyFoxTwinCities, photo via Facebook, tweet via Citypages]