Man two months snowed inside car survives

 

A SWEDISH man who spent two months snowed inside his car as temperatures outside dropped to -30 degrees is “awake and able to communicate”, according to the hospital treating him, where stunned doctors believe he was kept alive by the “igloo effect” of his vehicle.

The man, believed to be Peter Skyllberg (44), who was found near the northeastern town of Umea on Friday by passers-by, told police he had been in the car since December 19th without food, surviving only by eating snow and staying inside his warm clothes and sleeping bag.

Dr Ulf Segerberg, the chief medical officer at Noorland’s University Hospital, said he had never seen a case like it. The man had probably been kept alive, he said, by the natural warming properties of his snowed-in car which would have acted as “the equivalent of an igloo”.

“This man obviously had good clothes; he’s had a sleeping bag and he’s been in a car that’s been snowed over,” said Segerberg. “Igloos usually have a temperature of a couple of degrees below 0 and if you have good clothes you would survive in those temperatures and be able to preserve your body temperature. Obviously he has managed to preserve his body temperature or he wouldn’t have made it because us humans can’t really stand being cooled down like reptiles which can change the body temperature.”

Two months was at the “upper limit” of what a person would be able to survive without food, added Segerberg.

Skyllberg was found emaciated and very weak by a pair of snowmobilers who thought they had found a crashed car. They dug down through about a metre of snow to see its driver lying on the back seat in his sleeping bag, according to Ebbe Nyberg, a local police officer.

One doctor, Stefan Branth, said Skyllberg may have survived by going into hibernation mode. “A bit like a bear that hibernates. Humans can do that. He probably had a body temperature of around 31 degrees which the body adjusted to. – ( Guardianservice)