Are you ready for that time of year? That’s right – snow and ice storms will soon be here. It is hard to believe, but the winter months are approaching, and with it comes the safety issues of increased slip and falls. You have many ways to help reduce your chance of slipping and falling due to snow or ice. These include: wearing non-slip boots or footwear, taking smaller steps, use salt or a deicer, keep ahold of your vehicle and entering or exiting it, and, of course, keep your sidewalks and steps clear of snow and ice.

Keeping Sidewalks Clear of Snow and Ice

To help prevent injuries, cities throughout the State of Utah have codes regarding removing snow and ice from sidewalks. For example, under Salt Lake City Code 14.20.070, Salt Lake City requires the removal of snow and ice from the whole sidewalk adjacent to your property within 24 hours of a storm. This applies to both business sidewalks and residential sidewalks. If you do not know what your city code requires, I highly suggest you do your research, contact your city and inquire about their code needs.

Slip and Fall Accidents in Winter

Despite precautions, slip and falls due to snow and ice are inevitable. If you are unfortunate and suffer a fall, you should seek medical treatment, especially if you suffer an injury to your neck, back, spine, or head. Slip, and falls can be particularly dangerous for elderly or disabled individuals, and many injuries are not immediately evident.

There are city ordinances that address parking on city streets during winter months in addition to snow and ice removal. Some city ordinances prohibit parking on the road within 24 hours of a storm. Other cities, such as Sandy City, prohibit parking on a public street from November 1 through April 30. Parking on city streets during a storm increases accidents restricts or slows snow removal, and causes increased safety issues.

Ordinances with Removing Ice

In large part, these ordinances, and compliance with them, rely on concerned citizens, neighbors, and patrons. Compliance officers respond to complaints, and citations can be given for failure to comply with either ordinance, whether it is snow removal or parking on city streets during a storm. Suppose all of us embrace better safety practices, increase neighborly gestures, and adhere to city ordinances. In that case, everyone will experience a bit safer winter and perhaps avoid a severe injury due to a slip and fall.