Accidents to Avoid This Winter
Winter time can be one of the most magical times of year. It’s usually a time for family, holidays and lots of fun. However, there are things to be aware of so that you don’t let an unexpected trip to the ER spoil the fun. According to the National Weather Service, the average high temperature for the winter season in Chicago is only 33.7 degrees with the low being 19.7 degrees, on average. These are prime temperatures for snow and ice which can create many potential dangers and injuries in everyday life. Additionally, many people choose to engage in winter sports and activities such as skiing, snowboarding, sledding, etc. that can be even more hazardous. Making yourself aware of common injuries and accidents during the winter time is half the battle. This article will discuss the most common winter injuries, who is at risk, and how to stay safe this holiday season.
Most Common Winter Injuries
Personal injury during winter is likely to occur from performing every day activities, especially if you aren’t aware of the most common injuries. Some of the most common injuries during winter time in Chicago are:
Slipping on Ice & Snow
Most of the time when you see someone fall on the ice, it’s more funny than dangerous. Many people just laugh it off, but even if it doesn’t hurt at the moment, serious injuries can result down the line if not treated properly. The act of slipping and falling on ice means that your body is coming in harsh contact with rock hard ice which can lead to fractured bones, soft tissue damage, and even brain trauma. The most common injuries are:
- Concussions or other head injuries
- Muscle sprains
- Fractured bones
- Back injuries
In order to prevent slip and falls this holiday season, here are some tips:
- Wear slip resistant footwear
- Walk slowly and carefully, using a railing when possible
- Avoid texting, carrying heavy items or walking with hands in pockets
- Watch out for black ice
- Wipe your feet when you head inside after walking in snow
Slips and falls accidents don’t only take place outside. A slip and fall accident can easily occur inside on a slick floor caused by melting snow and ice in an entry hall or doorway. Don’t assume you are safe just because you are indoors. If you or someone you know is involved in a slip and fall accident this winter, don’t wait. Contact Whiteside & Goldberg to discuss the incident with a qualified personal injury attorney.
Driving in Hazardous Conditions
Whether you are driving during or after a winter storm, it’s important to keep an eye out for a few potential hazards. Wet roads could turn to ice, icy roads could have areas of “black ice”, and roads covered in snow can make it difficult to see lines on the road and anything else lying beneath the snow. Most people carry on with their normal daily routines despite a snow storm, especially in Chicago, so here are some tips to stay prepared:
- Keep emergency gear in your car: food, water, warm clothes, blankets, flashlight, medications, etc.
- Check your tires for adequate tread and inflation
- Make sure you have at least half a tank of fuel at all times
- Avoid cruise control when driving on ice or snow
- Get your brakes checked before driving in winter weather conditions
- When driving, drive slowly, keep a safe following distance, and don’t come to a full stop on snow or ice if you can avoid it.
Common injuries that result from winter car accidents are:
- Head injuries
- Shoulder injuries
- Neck and back injuries (whiplash)
- Knee injuries
If you are involved in a car accident caused by ice or snow, you shouldn’t hesitate to discuss the incident with a qualified personal injury attorney.
Who Is at Risk
Children are the most obvious demographic to be at risk of winter injuries. Young children can easily fall and injure themselves when they can’t reach railings or find proper balance on ice. When children are engaging in winter activities such as ice skating or sledding, it’s recommended that they were a helmet to prevent head injuries. Similarly, seniors have a high risk of slipping and falling during winter months. The elderly is the most at-risk group for slip and falls in general, but especially during the winter. These types of falls can lead to life threatening injuries such as fractured hips and head traumas. It’s always a good idea to accompany seniors down driveways, along sidewalks, and across parking lots.
Whiteside & Goldberg, Ltd.
Unfortunately, even with the best preventative measures, accidents happen. If you or a loved one are injured due to a slip and fall, car accident, or any other activity this winter, the first thing you should do is seek medical help by calling 9-11 or going to the ER. Additionally, you should contact a personal injury lawyer to discuss the incident. You may be able to receive compensation for your injuries. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 20,520 workplace slip-and-fall injuries involving ice, sleet or snow that required at least one day away from work to recover in 2016. Don’t let a slip and fall negatively affect your life any more than it has to.
If you are in the Chicago area, look no further than Whiteside & Goldberg. They work hard to get you the settlement you deserve. They offer a free consultation and do not charge you anything until you win a settlement. The experienced attorneys at Whiteside & Goldberg, Ltd. fight to secure your financial future. For more information on winter accident lawsuits, call 312-334-6875 for the Whiteside & Goldberg Michigan Avenue location and 815-730-7535 for their Shorewood office. You should never battle a winter accident lawsuit without an excellent attorney by your side.
The content of this blog is intended for informational purposes only and does not constitute or establish an attorney-client relationship, nor constitute legal advice. If you wish to discuss any further aspect of the material contained herein, please contact an attorney at Whiteside & Goldberg, Ltd.