How to Avoid a Slip and Fall in the WinterMarch 02, 2017
In winter, Canadian streets and sidewalks become incredibly dangerous. While some slip and falls are a normal part of life, others can cause serious injuries and medical expenses.
Below you’ll learn several safety tips that will help you avoid a slip or fall in winter.
Make Sure Sidewalks are Safe
Slippery, icy sidewalks and snow-covered walkways are so common during Canadian winters that you may not think before stepping foot on them. But many hazards can be hard to see, making them easy to miss until it’s too late. Ice can exist beneath fresh snowfall or be difficult to see at night. If the snow has just fallen, property owners may not have applied salt yet, which makes slips more likely. If temperatures are especially cold, even if salt has been applied, it can be rendered useless.
It’s also easy to think that just because your usual route hasn’t caused you problems before, this will always be the case. In reality, if a snow or ice storm happens, even the safest routes can become extremely dangerous. Moving slowly while wearing appropriate gear like boots with good tread can help you move safely over ice patches.
Precautions that Reduce your Slip and Fall Risk
One of the best defenses against slip and falls is getting up ten to fifteen minutes earlier than usual. This gives you time to put on appropriate gear and will also prevent you from rushing and moving too quickly in poor conditions.
There are also things you can do as you walk to reduce the likelihood of a slip. If you find yourself on ice or see ice ahead of you, don’t panic. Using small steps and keeping your body rigid just makes things worse. Instead, slow down, breathe deeply, and keep your feet apart, your knees loose and slightly bent, and your shoulders relaxed. This will lower your center of gravity and keep you balanced. Take wide, steady steps and shift your weight to the foot that is in front with each step forward.
Invest in the Right Gear
Purchasing specialized winter gear is one of the best ways to ensure that you get to your location safely. Rather than buying cheap boots, choose a lightweight pair that is waterproof, with good insulation and thick tread on the soles. Always avoid extremely heavy boots or those with pronounced heels.
If you want to be even more comfortable moving on snow and ice, you can purchase grippers, or traction cleats you can secure to the soles of your boots. They will grip the ice to prevent you from slipping. If you use a cane or walker, you can get an ice pick that you attach to prevent slips.
Even when you do everything you can to protect yourself from a slip and fall, accidents still happen. Because slip and fall injuries can be serious, if you experience one it’s a good idea to contact a Slip and Fall Lawyer right away.
If you’ve been injured in a slip and fall accident, find out more about your legal rights by downloading our free personal injury recovery kit or contact us for a free consultation.
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