Data shows slips, trips and falls increase during winter months
According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), slips and trips peak during winter months; more than 4,000 major injuries were recorded during autumn and winter last year.
Snow, ice and rain create slippery conditions which increase the chances of a fall, but there are measures which can be taken to help prevent personal injuries.
If you walk to work you should wear sensible footwear with plenty of grip. If your work requires you to wear certain footwear that doesn’t mean you have to wear them on the way to work, you can change into your work shoes when you reach your destination.
Allow plenty of time for your journey. If you are rushing you may be more unsteady, so leave with plenty of time to arrive at your destination.
Be mindful that floors and doorways inside buildings can also become hazardous and dangerous, particularly when excess water is brought in on shoes and clothes as people enter the building.
Slips, trips and falls are also among the most common types of accidents in the workplace. Employers have a responsibility to carry out risk assessments and must have suitable systems in place to help avoid staff or members of the public becoming injured as a result of poor health and safety. This includes cleaning up excess water inside buildings caused by adverse weather conditions.
Peter Mulhern, head of the serious injury team at Thompsons Solicitors, said: “We are all aware of the dangers associated with driving in poor weather conditions, but there’s also very real risks for pedestrians travelling by foot.
“It’s vital that we take extra care to try and prevent injury as a result of slips, trips and falls, both in and outside of the workplace. When a fall results in a head or brain injury, the consequences can be life changing.
“While we should all strive to take personal responsibility for our safety when we’re out and about this Christmas, it is also important that employers remain vigilant in protecting their staff and customers during wet or icy conditions. Equally, the government has a responsibility to provide sufficient grit for roads and pavements, as well as raising awareness of the risks pedestrians face in extreme weather conditions, which are often overlooked.”
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