Slip and fall injuries often result from the presence of snow and ice on surfaces. There are several factors that when combined with slippery surfaces increase the likelihood of a slip and fall incident. The following includes ideas on how to prevent the slips and falls.
Walking on snow and ice:
- Beware of icicles on the buildings and avoid walking beneath them.
- When walking on icy or snow-covered walkways, take short steps and walk at a slower pace so you can react quickly to change in traction.
- Use handrails on stairs and ramps.
- Plow, shovel and use de-icing salting or ice melting chemicals to remove ice and snow.
- Be extra careful on ladders, maintenance stands, and stairways.
- Have designated personnel arrive earlier to clear sidewalks of snow and ice.
- Ensure designated personnel don’t forget to shovel and de-ice employee service entrances, walkways to portables, and walkways to dumpsters.
- Consider putting buckets of sand or ice melt at all entrances/exits from the buildings so that any employee can apply it without waiting for a building custodian.
- Encourage staff and students to notify the principal immediately about icy sidewalks, entrances and walkways.
- Take extra care when walking to and from vehicles in the parking lot when icy/slick conditions are present.
- Place a durable mat just outside the entrance, where students and staff can clean ice, snow, and mud off their shoes before they enter.
- Use good solid carpet runners or mats inside the building entrances for students and staff to wipe off their feet. (Make sure the mats don’t bunch up and create a tripping hazard).
- Have readily available and display wet floor signs in areas where snow is tracked in and will melt.
- Avoid high heels, platform shoes or cowboy boots since these can compromise your natural balance and often times do not have tread on the sole.
- Avoid leather soles and any sole with a smooth finish.
- Wear boots and shoes with good threads. Rubber soles work well.
- Custodians, coaches, teachers or paraprofessionals on playground duty should consider wearing strap on ice grips around their shoes for better traction when walking or working outdoors.
- Investigate each slip and fall accident and determine what its cause was to prevent a reoccurrence.