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Store Sells Out Of Boots, Hand Warmers Amid Polar Vortex

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BIRMINGHAM (WWJ) – For stores that sell cold weather and ski gear — it’s been tough to keep up with the demand after a multiday storm dumped about a foot of snow across metro Detroit.

Shoppers bombarded Don Thomas Sporthaus in Birmingham, completely wiping the store out of a winter gear essential, according to Assistant Manager Adam Prisindareo.

“I’m totally sold out of waterproof boots for men and women,” Prisindareo told WWJ’s Sandra McNeill. “Everything we had, you know, stuff we would normally stock through the season, all of a sudden just flew out the doors.”

Other cozy merchandise, like gloves and thermal socks, is also flying off the shelf.

“Our other inventory is not too bad right now. But actually, I’m totally sold out of hand warmers and toe warmers until I get reloaded from the warehouse, hopefully by the end of the week,” he said.

Prisindareo said the store does have plenty of electric heated gloves in stock, but they’re definitely not cheap.

“They have a lithium battery in it, the same way your cellphone would, and a little battery pack goes in the cuff of the glove and you charge it the same way your cellphone would, too,” he said. “These guys run anywhere from $320 and $380.”

Prisindareo said the store has also been selling cross-country skis likes he’s never seen before.

“Cross-country skiing is really taking off. I can’t remember the last time we sold this many setups and poles and bindings and all that good stuff,” he said. “The most common places that we’ve seen people going is either out to the Metro Parks or the local golf courses. Lincoln Hill Golf Course in Birmingham and Sylvan Glen Golf Course in Troy have been pretty crowded I imagine.”

The snow wrapped up Monday after starting Saturday or Sunday, depending on the area. Over 10 inches of snow fell at Detroit Metropolitan Airport, 17 inches in Flint, 15 inches in Clarkston, 13 inches in Farmington Hills, 9.4 inches in Garden City, 8 inches in Livonia and 7.5 in Wyandotte.

Temperatures also dropped to record lows in Michigan as residents braced against bitter winds following a multiday storm that shuttered schools, closed government offices and contributed to at least six deaths. Lows of 14 below zero were reported Monday and early Tuesday at Detroit Metropolitan Airport in Romulus, as well as in Flint. The previous record low was minus 7 at the airport in 1942 and minus 10 at Flint in 1986.

Average temperatures across metro Detroit Tuesday morning were hovering at more than 10 below zero, with a wind chill of minus 35.

Wind Chill Warning, issued by the National Weather Service, remains in effect until 7 a.m. Wednesday for the entire Southeast Michigan area. A Winter Weather Advisory also remains in effect until 10 p.m. Tuesday.

MORE: Temperatures Drop To Record Lows In Michigan

Amtrak Cancels Popular Michigan To Chicago Trains Due To Weather

Several Deaths Blamed On Snow Shoveling, Winter Weather

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