Winter can be a lovely time of year, but snow, sleet, and icy roads and walkways can make getting around not only challenging, but dangerous. Falls are the leading cause of injury-related hospital visits, and wintry conditions raise the potential of taking a life-changing tumble.
Here are some simple tips from the STEADYU Ohio initiative to help you be steady on your feet this winter season:
- Allow extra time to get places in the winter. If you don’t feel safe, ask for help.
- When conditions are icy, walk with a buddy or carry a cell phone.
- Assume surfaces that look slippery are slippery and find another way.
- Keep rock salt, sand, and a shovel available near entrances to your home.
- Carry a small bag of sand or rock salt in your coat pocket for when you’re away from home.
- Don’t try to walk in more than an inch of snow to avoid tripping.
- Bundle up, but make sure you can see in all directions and move freely.
- Wear winter boots that fit well and provide more traction than tennis or dress shoes.
- Check that the rubber tips on canes and walkers are in good repair.
- Increase the lighting in your home with extra lamps and by using the highest wattage bulbs recommended for your fixtures.
- Keep space heaters, cords, and blankets out of walkways. If you must use throw rugs on cold floors, secure them to the floor with tape.
Visit steadyu.ohio.gov for more tips and resources to prevent falls.