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How to avoid slips and falls during icy conditions

When a winter storm bearing heavy amounts of ice and now makes it ways through your neighborhood, getting where you need to be can be tricky.

When a winter storm bearing heavy amounts of ice and now makes it ways through your neighborhood, getting where you need to be can be tricky.

As we age, ice-covered sidewalks and driveways can become more than just a nuisance, according to Dr. Ronan Factora of Cleveland Clinic, people over the age of 65 are more prone to suffering broken bones from a slip and fall on the ice, especially if they have a history of Osteoporosis.

"Osteoporosis is a condition where individuals have thin bones and they're at risk for breaking things like their hip or their vertebrae or their wrist, it leads to hospitalization and it's the number one reason why people end up in nursing homes."It's best to have someone else clear your driveway and walkway whenever possible.If you really need to clear the snow yourself, be very methodical and take your time.Experts say you should always wear proper shoes with good traction.If you have to go outdoors for travel, Dr. Factora says its wise to have someone go with you, that way if something to were to happen and you needed help right away, there is someone there.The onset of winter weather doest mean you have to stay confined to your home, but if you do plan to venture outdoors, it's best to have a plan in place.
"You shouldn't be feeling like you have to be isolated in the home when the weather really turns bad. And if you have to do these jobs, then just think ahead and make sure that you're taking extra steps to make sure you're going to avoid falling, avoiding an injury and avoiding a situation where you have to be by yourself if something like that were to occur."

Follow these 10 tips to make sure you’re staying safe when walking around in snowy and icy conditions:

1. Walk slowly and carefully. Wear boots or other slip-resistant footwear.

2. Use special care when getting in and out of vehicles. Use the vehicle for support if you need to do so.

3. Watch for slippery floors when you enter any building or home.

4. Try to avoid carrying items, or walking with your hands in your pockets; this can reduce your ability to catch yourself if you lose your balance. Instead, carry a backpack if you have one.

5. Watch out for black ice.

6. Tap your foot on potentially slick areas to see if the areas are slippery.

7. Walk as flat-footed as possible in very icy areas.

8. Avoid uneven surfaces if possible. Avoid steps or curbs with ice on them.

9. Report any untreated surfaces to Maintenance and Facilities. Help us keep you safe!

10. Remember: Ice and snow mean “take it slow!”



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