Traversing icy walkways, sidewalks, driveways, and parking lots can be very dangerous and we have lots of ice during the winter months in Aroostook County.
The National Safety Council estimates that falls cause more than 1,500 deaths and 300,000 injuries per year. Here are some ice safety tips to share with your loved ones.
1. Plan to give yourself extra time for walking, do not assume a clear path.
2. Wear shoes or boots that provide traction. Wear flat-soled shoes and avoid shoes with heels. Footwear made of rubber provides better traction than plastic and leather soles. You can also purchase ice cleats or crampons for even more stability on ice.
3. Move slowly and use special care when entering and exiting vehicles as well as buildings and climbing up or walking downstairs. Use handrails or your car for support and try to keep your center of gravity over your support leg. Keep your hands out of your pockets and remove snow or water from shoes or boots when entering buildings.
4. Stay alert and walk on designated walkways as much as possible. Don’t take shortcuts over snow piles and look ahead when you walk. Avoid texting while walking and remember that a sidewalk completely covered with ice may require traveling along its edge for traction.
5. Take short steps or shuffle for stability on ice. Bend slightly forward and walk flat-footed. Be prepared to fall and if you do use multiple contact points at your thigh, hip, and shoulder instead of simply stretching out your arms to brace yourself.