In cold, wet conditions, common dangers include slips and falls, as well as vehicle accidents. Remember, ice is twice as slippery at 30˚F as at 0˚F. Taking simple precautions can prevent accidents and injuries.
Areas that may become slick and require extra caution include stairs, ramps, tile floors, parking lots and metal parts of equipment.
- Have an excellent snow and ice removal program in place.
- Place non-skid floor mats and caution signs in slippery, high traffic areas.
- Wear shoes with anti-slip soles and/or thin cuts, often called siping, that disperses water and grips the ground. Use traction devices that strap onto shoes when conditions require them.
Slips can happen when entering and exiting your vehicle as well as on the road.
- Use a three-point stance when getting in and out of your vehicle. Use a grab-bar or doorframe for stability.
- When roads are slick, slow down, leave extra following distance between you and other cars and no sudden movements.
- If you begin to skid, turn the wheel in the direction you want to go, ease off the accelerator and do not hit the brakes.
- Know the weather conditions you will encounter and plan ahead.
- Inspect your vehicle for proper tires and other winter driving gear. Be sure that chains and cold weather gear are on board and ready for use. Keep lights, windows and mirrors clean, especially in low visibility situations such as darkness or fog.
- Assume that roads, bridges and exits are icy, and be ready for them.
- If pulling over due to an emergency, increase your visibility to passing traffic. Activate the vehicle’s hazard warning lights, wear your safety vest, set up a warning triangle or flares and assume that ongoing traffic does not see you.