Statistics show that the number of slips, trips and falls increases during winter
Twisted ankles, concussion and broken bones – these are just some of the injuries that people sustain during the wet, cold, and sometimes icy, winter months.
Figures from the Hospital Episode Statistics for England show there were 2,919 admissions to hospital in 2014/15 after people fell over on snow or ice.
In winter, people are more likely to encounter wet ground covered in debris or snow and ice, both of which can increase the chance of suffering a fall.
In the workplace slips, trips and falls are among the most common types of accidents. According to Health and Safety Executive (HSE) statistics slips and trips tend to peak during the winter, with 4,022 major slips, trips and falls reported from October 2013 – March 2015
Employers have a responsibility to carry out risk assessments and have suitable systems in place to avoid staff from being injured.
Laura Harper, a serious injury lawyer based in Thompsons Solicitors’ Birmingham office, said: “Although we are often reminded of the risks of driving in wintery weather, there are also very real risks for pedestrians travelling by foot and for people in the workplace.
“A slip or a fall most often results in minor bruising, but the consequences can also be life-changing if a person suffers a head or brain injury.
“While we are all expected to take personal responsibility for our safety when we’re out and about, it is also important that employers protect their staff during wet or icy conditions. The government must also ensure that local authorities have sufficient resources to be able to keep roads and pavements clean and grit them where necessary, they should also be responsible for raising awareness of the risks pedestrians, inside and outside the workplace, face in wintery conditions as these are often overlooked.”
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