Each winter, slip and fall accidents cause serious injuries. Even when surfaces do not look especially icy or slippery, it is very possible that a thin sheet of transparent ice or “black ice” is covering your pathway and putting you at risk. When you approach a footpath or roadway that appears to be covered with ice or snow, always use extreme caution. Many slips and falls happen in places people regard as safe and secure – typically outside their front door, on the doorstep, on the path or while getting out of the car.
With the winter weather upon us, the Safety Committee of Mystic Valley Elder Services (MVES) advises these 10 tips to make sure you are staying safe when walking around in snowy and icy conditions:
- Walk slowly and carefully; wear boots or other slip-resistant footwear.
- Use special care when getting in and out of vehicles; use the vehicle for support if you need to do so.
- Watch for slippery floors when you enter any home or other building.
- Avoid walking with your hands in your pockets; this can reduce your ability to catch yourself if you lose your balance.
- Watch out for black ice.
- Tap your foot on potentially slick areas to see if the areas are slippery.
- Walk as flat-footedly as possible in very icy areas.
- Avoid uneven surfaces if possible; avoid steps or curbs with ice on them.
- Report any untreated surfaces to your town, property owner or public work’s maintenance department to help keep you safe.
- Remember: Ice and snow mean “Take it slow!”
If you are interested in knowing more about programs at MVES, please visit https://mves.org/ or call 781-324-7705.