SLIPS, TRIP AND FALLS - WINTER SAFETY TIPS
It has been frigid cold last weekend and today before the winter officially starts on Wednesday, December 21, slips, trips and falls are the number 1 reason for an industrial injury in the United States. Walking safely under cold, snowy or icy conditions will be more challenging.
Following are some tips on how to walk safely under cold, snowy or icy conditions:
- Clear walking surfaces of snow and ice as quickly as possible.
- Wear boots with good rubber treads to have better traction.
- Plan ahead and give yourself sufficient time.
- When walking on steps, always use the hand railings and plant your feet firmly on each step;
- Take short steps and walk at a slower pace so you can react quickly to a change in traction.
- Bending the knees a little and taking slower and shorter steps increase traction and can greatly reduce your chances of falling.
- Stop walking occasionally to break momentum.
- Look out for "black ice."
- Carrying heavy items can challenge your sense of balance. Try not to carry too much--you need to leave your hands and arms free to better balance yourself.
- Be prepared to fall and try to avoid using your arms to break your fall. If you fall backward, make a conscious effort to tuck your chin so your head doesn't strike the ground with a full force.
- When entering a building, remove as much snow and water from your boots as you can. Walk carefully as floors and stairs may be wet and slippery.
- Use special care when entering and exiting vehicles--use the vehicle for support.