Slips, trips and falls were the leading cause of 892,270 work injuries and accounted for 849 work related fatalities in 2016, costing the U.S. approximately $70 billion annually in workers’ compensation and medical costs (BLS 2016).
During icy and snowy conditions, the incidence of injuries due to slips and falls can increase. Below are a number of suggestions to minimize these falls and injuries:
- Avoid slippery surfaces – take a route around obvious hazards.
- Concentrate on the path ahead, taking your time and proceeding slowly.
- Wear appropriate slip-resistant footwear – shoes or boots with waffled, ridged or heavily textured soles.
- Use handrails when provided and three points of contact when entering or exiting vehicles.
- Beware of changes in walking surfaces, avoiding steps or curbs with ice on them.
- Clean your shoes when entering a building – caked ice and snow can cause you to slip and can also create a slippery, wet floor for others.
- Avoid carrying items and talking on the phone.
- Walk slowly, deliberately and as flat-footed as possible.
If you fall
- Try to roll with the fall if you fall forward.
- Sit down if you begin to fall backward.
Source: North Carolina Department of Administration