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Prevent Injury During Winter Storms by Following Some Safety Tips

Ice and snow can create a high risk for falls that can cause brain or spinal cord injuries.

Ice and snow can create a high risk for falls that can cause serious injuries, including brain and spinal cord injuries. Ice can be difficult to see, and even a thin layer can make any type of travel treacherous. Tree limbs can be weighed down with ice and become more likely to fall, damaging property and possibly causing injury.

Here are some tips from the Shepherd Center Injury Prevention Program to help you stay safe and avoid being hurt during winter storms.

  1. The best policy is to stay put. Assuming you are warm, medically stable and have food and other supplies, it’s best to remain where you are until the ice melts.
  2. Always use extreme caution if you must go out in the ice or snow. You may not be able to see ice under the snow, but you must assume it’s there.
  3. Wear appropriate footwear that is well insulated, waterproof, has a non-slip, thick sole and a wide, low heel. Rubber soles with deep traction are best.
  4. Walk slowly with flat feet. Take shorter steps and bend your knees to reduce the chance of a slip or fall. Do not run under any circumstances.
  5. Do not attempt to walk up or down stairs unless there is a handrail and you can maintain a secure grip at all times. Again, go very slowly if you must take stairs.
  6. Stay clear from the edges of buildings to avoid falling icicles, which can be extremely dangerous.
  7. Avoid walking under trees.
  8. If possible spread salt or sand to reduce ice buildup, especially in places where you may need to walk frequently.
  9. When going back inside, be sure to remove wet shoes and clean up any snowy debris to avoid creating slippery conditions inside.
  10. If you are by yourself, have a plan in place to maintain contact with someone else, especially in the chance that the power will be lost. If you are stuck, need medical attention or run out of basic supplies, call 911.
About Shepherd Center

Shepherd Center provides world-class clinical care, research, and family support for people experiencing the most complex conditions, including spinal cord and brain injuries, multi-trauma, traumatic amputations, stroke, multiple sclerosis, and pain. An elite center recognized as both Spinal Cord Injury and Traumatic Brain Injury Model Systems, Shepherd Center is ranked by U.S. News as one of the nation’s top hospitals for rehabilitation. Shepherd Center treats thousands of patients annually with unmatched expertise and unwavering compassion to help them begin again.