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Ahhh springtime! We’ve moved from snow and ice to rain and lawn mowing! But winter weather will return, bringing with it snow, ice, and hazardous circumstances. Due to the hazardous conditions brought on by cold, wind, snow, and ice, the most frequent incidents during the winter include slips, trips, and falls. Take precautions to prevent slip and fall accidents, especially on slippery surfaces.

While minor injuries like bumps and bruises are the most common injuries from winter falls, people also get severe injuries like broken bones when they fall or slip. You can significantly reduce your risk by getting ready and working to prevent winter injury. Winter weather can make stairways dangerous, increasing the chance of slip and fall accidents. To maintain the safety of people using stairs during and after winter weather conditions, preventative steps must be taken.

Slip and Fall Accidents on Stairs

Here are some tips to prevent slip and fall accidents on stairs after winter weather:

1. Clear snow and ice:

During the winter, snow and ice are the main contributors to slip-and-fall accidents on stairs. Using a shovel, snow blower, or ice melt, it’s crucial to remove all snow and ice from stairs, including steps, landings, and railings. Before permitting anyone to use the stairs, make sure they are totally dry. You may also decide to cover your stairs before a winter weather storm starts with a tarp or other thick plastic covering. This makes it easy to remove the covering after all precipitation ends, revealing clean and dry stairs to use at your convenience.

2. Install handrails:

Handrails provide a firm grip for individuals going up or down the stairs, making it easier to maintain balance. Installing handrails on both sides of the stairs is essential, especially for the elderly or people with disabilities. This is a great job to get done in the summer when the weather is warm and dry.

3. Increase lighting:

For stair safety, enough illumination is essential, especially in the winter when the amount of daylight is reduced. Install powerful LED lighting to illuminate the stairway’s stairs, landings, and railings. Additionally, motion-activated lights are a fantastic choice for adding more light as required. If you don’t have electricity available nearby, you may use a strong and sturdy solar light from your local hardware store.

4. Add traction:

Slip-resistant treads or anti-slip tape can be applied to stairs to improve traction and prevent slips and falls. These products are available in various sizes and colors and can be easily installed on stairs and landings. Step anti-skid tape that is strong, waterproof, and suitable for both indoor and outdoor use. Snow slip and fall experts recommend 80-grit premium heavy-duty tape because it has the perfect texture to prevent sliding. The non-skid tape gives your feet more traction so you can stay safe on any slick surface, including stairs.

5. Use caution signs:

People can be made aware of the possible risk of slippery conditions by placing warning signs at the bottom of stairs. To guarantee that visitors read the signs before using the stairs, they should be placed clearly and at eye level.

6. Wear proper footwear:

Footwear with good traction is essential for preventing slip and fall accidents on stairs. Encourage shoes with non-slip soles, such as boots or sneakers, and to avoid wearing shoes with smooth, slippery soles. Some footwear is designed to be lightweight and abrasion-resistant, enabling users to take on a mix of terrain and conditions, including frozen precipitation.

7. Encourage proper posture:

Maintaining proper posture while using stairs can reduce the risk of slip and fall accidents. If you must navigate stairs during wintery weather, keep your head up, look ahead, and hold onto the handrail while using stairs. Go slowly and proceed with much caution.

8. Avoid distractions:

Distractions can increase the risk of slip and fall accidents on stairs. You must avoid using your phone or carrying heavy items while using stairs. Remind young people to stay focused on the stairs by talking their way down them and giving instructions the whole way. This will keep you focused on the task at hand, as well as them. 

9. Regular maintenance:

Complete regular maintenance of stairs during the spring, summer, or fall to ensure the safety of those using them during the winter. Inspect stairs regularly for any damage or wear and tear, and repair any issues immediately. Some snow and ice removal products are hard on cement, causing them to crumble or erode over time. Watch for this wear and tear and make repairs in the off-season as needed.

Staying Safe in the Winter Months While Navigating Stairs

Prevent Slip Fall Accidents

Preventing slip and fall accidents on stairs after winter weather conditions requires thinking ahead. You can follow these tips for dealing with slippery outdoor stairs after a fresh snowfall, and you can take the time to research the best products to help improve your chances of navigating steps and stairs safely in the winter. Winter snow and ice can be pretty, and the moisture is good for the land. But we want to enjoy it safely! Contact Jeremy Swenson.

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