Digital Exclusive: Walking safety precautions during the winter season

Digital Exclusive

DES MOINES, Iowa (KCAU) – During the winter, many people slip, trip and fall while walking outdoors.

The Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) said that these slips, trips, and falls are the third most common cause of unintentional deaths from injuries in the United States.

To help prevent people from injuring themselves while walking on snow and ice, the IDPH has some safety precautions.

  • Use handrails when entering and exiting vehicles or buildings to go from one position to the next.
  • 80% of slips and falls happen in parking lots and sidewalks with more than 50% happening between 6 a.m. and 12 p.m because of snow and ice.
  • If possible, avoid north-facing entrances to buildings because they can remain icy and slippery if they’re not properly cleared.
  • Wear appropriate footwear such as rubber and neoprene composite boots for more traction. Considering carrying your dress shoes instead of wearing them to work.
  • Walk like a penguin on slippery surfaces. Slow down and take small steps while keeping your hands free for balance. Bend knees slightly and walk flat-footed with your center of gravity directly over your feet.
  • Don’t carry items that could impair your balance. Do not carry children while walking on slippery surfaces as a fall could put the child’s life in danger.
  • Use doormats to help remove snow and water from shoes when entering buildings as wet surfaces are a huge risk.

For more information about staying safe during the winter season, click here.

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