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West Uusimaa wellbeing services county


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West Uusimaa wellbeing services county


How to avoid slipping?

When the Finnish winter is doing its best and turning the streets into ice fields, walking outdoors can become a dangerous balancing act. The weather can get very slippery when it snows or rains on top of ice, when a layer of water melts on ice, or when packed snow becomes slippery after plenty of snowfall is followed by zero-degree or slightly freezing temperatures. At worst, slipping can lead to injuries requiring hospitalisation. Fortunately, you can minimize the risk of falling by taking a few precautions.

  1. Use the right kind of shoes: Invest in shoes or boots with a good grip, such as rubber soles or anti-slip soles. Avoid smooth-soled shoes that only have little grip on icy surfaces.
  2. Walk carefully: Take shorter steps and walk more slowly to maintain a better balance. Take your hands out of your pockets to improve your balance with your hands when necessary.
  3. Watch your steps: Observe areas forming on the ice, especially in shaded areas where melted snow can freeze again at night. Black ice, the thin and almost invisible layer of ice formed on asphalt, is particularly deceptive. Use marked walkways whenever possible, as they are likely to be salted or sanded.
  4. Use handrails: When possible, use handrails to support you, especially when in stairs or steep hills.
  5. Stay alert: Avoid distractions, such as watching your mobile screen or talking on your phone while walking in slippery conditions.

By following these simple tips and staying alert, you can significantly reduce the risk of slipping in icy conditions. Remember that a few additional precautions can have a major impact on preventing unnecessary falls and injuries. Stay upright and uninjured!

However, if the icy weather catches you and you injure your limbs or your head, you can call 116117 and ask for advice on whether you need to seek treatment. As a rule of thumb, small strains and bruises can be treated at home, but if the limb cannot be used normally, you cannot place weight on it or the pain is severe, it is good to contact a health care professional in order to assess the situation. In the case of a head injury, a professional’s assessment should be sought, especially if there are any symptoms. Even those with a mild head injury should be monitored by another person in order to detect any changes in the level of consciousness in time.