January brought record temperatures, along with plenty of snow and ice around the Rockford and northern Illinois area. No matter how long you have lived here, some winters feel especially hard and trying. Winter is far from over, as it is common for us to experience ice and snow well into late March or even early April. How comfortable are you walking on icy surfaces and keeping yourself safe as you run your errands or take a walk around the block? Here are a few tips that will help keep you from slipping or hurting yourself.

Be Alert

Ice can form on sidewalks quickly and sometimes unexpectedly. During the winter months, keep your eyes peeled for any signs of ice. Even when the air temperature is warmer than 32 degrees, freezing ground temperatures can cause drizzle or rain to turn to ice immediately when it hits the ground. You are more likely to slip on ice that you aren’t expecting, so keep yourself safe by always being alert.

Be Cautious

Walking on icy conditions should be a slow-moving affair. You are more likely to slip if you are in a rush, so be sure to take it slow when trekking through parking lots, sidewalks, or other surfaces. If you anticipate being on a longer walk, perhaps taking your child to school or walking your dog, consider using traction assistance on your shoes. You can get traction devices that easily slip on and off your boots, assuring you can move easier on icy walkways.

Look for Salted Areas

Finally, when you have the option to walk on a salted area, choose it. While salt cannot guarantee a slip-free surface, it is typically much safer than a non-salted or maintained walkway.

If you do slip when out and about, take your injuries seriously. Often, our embarrassment from a slip can make us get up and moving again quickly without carefully assessing how we feel. A slip on ice can cause a litany of problems including bruising, sprains, whiplash, and even head trauma. You may not feel the extent of your injuries until the next day, so schedule a doctor appointment if you are sore, especially bruised, or hurt. You should also seek medical attention if you hit your head during your fall.

If you slipped and fell on a walkway or path, you could be entitled to assistance with your medical bills. Give the team at MacCloskey Kesler and Associates a call to talk more about your situation and options. We want to be sure you are healthy and have the compensation you deserve.

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