Dangers of Slip and Falls During Winter

gcinjurylawnew September 20 2016

Winter is upon us, and cold weather precipitation brings icy, slippery surfaces that can be extremely dangerous if precautions are not taken. In New Jersey, property owners are legally required to keep their premises free from hazardous conditions, including snow and ice. If you are injured in a slip and fall accident this winter, seek immediate medical attention.

Although we cannot change the weather, we can all prepare by heeding the following tips:

  • Concentrate on the walkway in front of you; avoid looking at your cell phone while walking on the ice.
  • Walk slowly and deliberately.
  • If you see a slippery surface, like wet leaves or an ice patch, walk around it if possible.
  • Wear appropriate winter footwear. Boots with waffled or heavily textured bottoms help provide traction. Remember, you can always change into dress shoes when you arrive safely at your destination.
  • Use handrails whenever possible.
  • Exercise caution when entering buildings, as melting snow and slush can make floors slippery.
  • Avoid carrying items whenever possible. Keeping your hands free will help you be able to balance. Using a backpack is a good alternative.
  • Look out for changes in walking surfaces. Many slips occur when someone doesn’t realize they are leaving a secure surface.
  • Clean caked ice and snow from the soles of your shoes before going indoors.

How You Can Lessen Potential Slip and Fall Injuries

If you do slip, there are a few things that can be done to mitigate potential injury. For example:

  • If you begin to fall forward, try to roll with the fall.
  • If you begin to fall backwards, sit down.
  • Keep your body relaxed while you are falling. Injuries tend to be more severe when a person tenses up their body.