Two Portland-area residents were among 10 deaths linked to last month’s winter weather.

The victims, a man and a woman, were found in separate residences, according to various media reports.

“We ruled them both hypothermia-related deaths,” Sumner County EMS Assistant Chief Sam Clark said.

Portland Police Chief Jason Williams said that the first victim was found in a residence on Hardin Road around 4:30 p.m. on Feb. 17.

“It’d kind of up in the air whether it’s weather-related,” Williams said of the first victim, described as an elderly male. “He had multiple health problems. The heat was off when we got there, but it’s possible he could have passed away before the electricity surge and his heater reset. That’s why there was no heat.”

The temperature in the home reportedly was in the mid-20s.

Williams said that there had not been an autopsy ordered as there were no signs of suspicious activity and because of the man’s medical history.

“We can’t attribute it 100% to weather, but it could have played a factor,” Williams said.

The woman was found on the afternoon of Feb. 18 at a residence out in the county, Williams said. No identifying information was available for her as well.

Clark said the power was on in the second residence, but that a wood-burning stove had no signs of use.

Clark added that Sumner EMS was unable to disclose the names of the victims, citing privacy laws.

Ten deaths in all were linked to the winter storms last month, according to the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency. In addition to Sumner County, deaths occurred in Shelby, Maury, Williamson, Dickson and Overton counties.

Reach Chris Gregory at 615-450-5756 or cgregory@hartsvillevidette.com.

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