Winters in Pennsylvania can be brutal. The temperatures can cause hazardous conditions for drivers and pedestrians. While a lot of information is focused on avoiding traffic accidents during winter weather conditions, you should also focus on avoiding falls during the winter.
Falls on icy or snowy surfaces can cause severe injuries, including broken bones, traumatic brain injury, and spinal cord injuries. If you are not careful, you could find yourself in the hospital with an injury that will keep you out of work and on bed rest for a long time.
Safety Tips for Walking in Winter Weather
Below are several tips that can help you avoid a fall during winter weather:
- Slow down! When you are in a rush, you are not as cautious and can increase your risk of falling. Remember to walk slowly, watch where you are walking, and take deliberate steps to avoid a fall.
- Keep your hands out of your pocket and avoid carrying objects. You want your arms free to help you keep your center of gravity and balance. Extending your arms out to your sides can help you keep your balance and break your fall if you do slip.
- Wear the proper shoes. Yes, winter shoes can be bulky and unattractive, but they provide excellent support and traction against winter weather conditions. If you do not want to wear these shoes all day, you can carry other shoes with you to change into once you arrive at your destination.
- Do not walk in the street. Even though the street might be clear and seem like a good option for avoiding falls, you could be putting yourself in Cars can still slide on black ice. Always walk in designated walkways as much as possible.
- Wear socks over your shoes. If you are in a pinch and you need extra traction, putting socks over your shoes could give you the extra traction to avoid a fall getting from a building to your car or vice versa.
- Use handrails whenever available to give you extra support and balance.
- Be careful when entering buildings during winter weather conditions. The floors could be slick from the water melting off shoes, coats, and umbrellas.
- If you are at a higher risk for falls because of your age or health conditions, avoid walking outside during poor weather conditions whenever possible. Ask for assistance from someone to help steady you when you are walking outside during winter weather.
Filing a Claim for a Slip and Fall During the Winter
Not all slips and falls during the winter are accidents. Some falls could have been avoided had the property owner taken the proper precautions to protect visitors and guests. If you fall on another person’s property during the winter, you might be entitled to recover compensation for your damages. However, holding a property owner liable for damages for a winter slip and fall could be complicated. You want an experienced Erie personal injury attorney to review your case to determine if you have a premises liability claim against the owner.
Call The Travis Law Firm toll free at (800) 401-2066 to schedule a free legal consultation with one of our attorneys to discuss whether you can recover compensation for a winter slip and fall accident. It does not cost you anything to discuss your claim with an experienced personal injury attorney.