Illinois is known around the nation for its blustery weather. With the cold that blows in each winter comes snow, ice, sleet and other potentially dangerous weather conditions that can contribute to slip-and-fall accidents. These accidents occur when a person slips due to an unknown hazard and falls, resulting in an injury. An Illinois slip-and-fall lawyer is often familiar with the various scenarios cause slip-and-fall accidents. These may include slippery sidewalks in front of businesses, puddles at supermarket entrances, or other similar conditions. Individuals can follow these four tips to protect themselves from being injured in a slip-and-fall:
1. Keep vigilant
When people are fully aware of their surroundings at all times, they are less likely to be injured while slipping and falling. In winter, individuals should always be on the lookout for tell-tale signs of potential dangers. A buildup of snow close to an entryway may indicate that the floors inside could be wet and slick. Illinois residents should make it a habit to treat every entryway floor as if it is covered in water in the winter. Individuals should also know how to recognize black ice and other hazards.
2. Choose slip-resistant footwear
According to the University of Wisconsin Safety & Health, one of the greatest preventions individuals can utilize to prevent slip-and-fall accidents is choosing to wear anti-slip footwear. These shoes, boots, ice walkers and overshoes are designed specifically to help give extra traction to prevent accidental slips. They are often made of rubber or other man-made materials that are flexible and soft. Some of the most slip-resistant shoes have fine treaded designs and smaller lugs that increase grip. These shoes may allow some individuals to pass safely over icy sidewalks and wet floors without incident.
3. Learn to balance
Individuals should learn what to do in case they are faced with a potentially dangerous area that they cannot avoid. While walking on an icy or slippery surface, individuals should tread carefully and deliberately in case they slip. This can help them reclaim their center of gravity more quickly than may otherwise be possible. Walking with the feet pointed slightly outward will also help them center their balance.
4. Be smart
An Illinois slip-and-fall lawyer knows that acting correctly in potentially dangerous situations may mean the difference between receiving an injury and walking away unharmed. Pedestrians should always use safety rails while outside whenever they are available. If there is ever the possibility of bypassing slippery sidewalks or lightless alleys, people should always choose the safest route possible to minimize potential hazards even if it adds additional time to their schedules.
Individuals who have been injured in a slip-and-fall accident should contact an attorney for assistance. They may be able to recover damages with the help of an Illinois slip-and-fall lawyer.