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Tips for Winter Safety

Nobody knows better than a personal injury lawyer, how important winter safety is. By preventing motor vehicle accidentsslips and falls and recreational accidents, I can (hopefully) keep you out of my office and at home with your family—where you belong.

Motor Vehicle Winter Safety Tips

Everyone saw the horrendous repercussions of Buffalo’s first big snow fall back in November. Many motorists became trapped in their vehicles with fourteen fatalities in total from the storm. The worst part is that many of those deaths could have been prevented with a bit of foresight and preparation. Even the beginning of January here in Hamilton saw frigid temperatures – just as dangerous as the snowfall in Buffalo. Starting today, I am going to challenge you to start driving safer and to get your car ready for an emergency situation.

  • Create a winter safety kit and keep it in your trunk for emergencies. DO THIS TODAY! Ontario winters can be harsh and I don’t want to read about you in the papers.Your kit should include warm blankets, a flashlight, water, snacks, a first-aid kit, road salt, a cell-phone adapter, booster cables, emergency flares and a shovel.

Head this way for more tips on making a winter safety kit.

  • Fill your windshield wiper fluid as it runs out quickly in snowy conditions and keep an extra supply in the car (why not add it to your safety kit?)
  • Keep extra distance between yourself and other cars to account for slow braking. This also applies to snow plows. While it may be tempting to speed up and pass them, it’s best to practice patience.
  • In the event of a skid, ease off the gas and don’t brake until the car is under control.
  • Make sure you have winter tires (forget about all weather tires, this is Canada, you need snow tires) and that they are properly inflated.
  • Keep your gas tank at least half full at all times.

Slip And Fall Safety Tips

I always see a spike in slips and falls during the winter months. Remember, everyone who owns, manages, or maintains property in Ontario has a legal duty to take all reasonable steps to keep the people who use the property safe and prevent a slip and fall. Keep these tips in mind to protect yourself, your family and neighbours during snowy and icy conditions.

  • Invest in anti-slip boots or footwear that grip the ice.
  • Lay out floor mats in the entryway of your home to prevent sliding and slipping when you walk in with wet boots.
  • Regularly shovel your front steps, walkway and sidewalks.
  • Salt your front porch, steps, walkway and sidewalk daily, (or more) depending on the conditions. Remember that you can buy pet safe and garden friendly ice melter so there’s really no excuse for failing to clear your ice.
  • Keep your hands out ready to steady yourself in case of slips when walking.
  • Wear brightly coloured or reflective clothing when shoveling or walking the dog to make yourself visible to drivers.

Snowmobile & Ski Safety Tips

While snowmobiling and skiing are both Canadian staples during the winter months, recreational activities that involve high speed and icy conditions can have serious consequences. Even with a helmet, accidents can result in injuries like broken limbs, traumatic brain injury, spinal cord, serious orthopedic injuries and even death. Stay safe and have fun this winter by taking the necessary precautions.

  • Check the weather forecast before heading out. If you have to think about whether it’s safe or not, it probably isn’t.
  • Wear well-insulated protective clothing including goggles, waterproof snowmobile suits and gloves, and rubber-bottomed boots.
  • All snowmobile passengers should wear helmets that meet Canadian standards.
  • Carry a small first-aid kit in your jacket, snowsuit or snowmobile, along with a cell phone and emergency flares.
  • Always make sure someone knows where you are and when you plan to return; this way, it will spark concern if you’re late.
  • Travel in groups of two or more, and only on marked trails away from roads, waterways, railroads and pedestrian traffic.
  • Never drink alcohol or use non-prescription drugs before or while operating a snowmobile.

With a few months of winter left, it’s important to keep these safety tips in mind to keep you and your family safe so you can enjoy the rest of the season—injury free. Have you been injured in a motor vehicle accent, slip and fall or recreational winter activity? Please reach out so I can get you the compensation you deserve.

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