Staying Safe in Winter Weather
With cold weather in full swing, there are certain safety precautions we should all take to avoid injuries and accidents that tend to happen this time of year. It’s best to avoid going outside in icy conditions, however, if you do need to travel when winter weather hits, it’s important to be cautious as you drive since it’s easier to lose control of your vehicle in icy or snowy conditions. Make sure any car seats or booster seats your children need are properly installed and remove any outer coat before buckling a child in. Thick coats can interfere with the way the harness fits on a child but can be placed over the child like a blanket after they’ve been buckled.
Whether at home or on the road, it helps to have an emergency kit on hand with the things you might need. These kits should include items such as:
- A three-day supply of non-perishable food and water
- A three-day supply of all medicines, at a minimum
- Flashlights and extra batteries
- A first aid kit
- Personal care items (toothbrush, soap, baby wipes)
- A fully charged cell phone and charger
- Radio, for updates on the situation
- Snow shovel, broom and ice scraper
- Sand or kitty litter, in case your car is stuck or you need to help with traction
- Jumper cables
If you get stuck while on the road, stay with your car. Make sure your exhaust pipes are clear of snow before leaving your car on for long periods of time to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.
At home, be sure to salt your walkways and driveways ahead of time if the forecast is calling for bad weather. When walking outside in icy conditions, use handrails and be mindful of your stance—keep a wide gait to help with balance.
Leigha Jordan, the injury prevention coordinator for the trauma department at Cone Health, spoke on Fox 8 House Call about staying safe in winter weather.