Over 5600 Canadians Injured in Winter Activities Each Year
According to the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI), over 5600 Canadians are hurt each year while participating in winter activities. The study found that we are more than twice as likely to sustain injuries from activities like skiing and snowboarding when compared to playing hockey. Other activities likely to cause injury are skating, snowmobiling and tobogganing.
“There is a lot to enjoy about Canadian winters, but safety and precautions are important across all age groups,” explains Greg Webster, Director of Primary Health Care Information and Clinical Registries at CIHI. “Every year, more than 5,000 Canadians get seriously injured—requiring at least one night’s hospital stay—due to a winter sport or recreational activity. These numbers do not include visits that involve only the emergency department (ED) or a doctor’s office, or deaths at the scene, so the total number of injuries is actually much higher.”
Most often hurt in winter activities are boys aged 10 to 19, but a growing number of older Canadians are hurt from falling on ice – in 2010-2011, 7138 individuals were hospitalized for injuries caused by a fall on ice.
About 70% of all falls were among those 50 and older. Therefore, it is important to recognize the dangers of icy surfaces to reduce your risk of slipping and falling.
When walking outdoors in winter, walk cautiously. Keep your balance by walking with your hands out of your pockets and avoid carrying heavy loads. Pay attention to your surroundings and watch your step. Stick to sidewalks, walkways and clear pathways.
You must also be aware that a slip and fall accident on your property – whether it be your home or business – can become your problem. Make sure your property is safe for visitors by removing snow immediately from walkways before it becomes packed or turns to ice. Apply ice melter frequently to prevent the formation of dangerous ice patches.
If you are injured as a result of fall on private property, parking lot or sidewalk, contact a personal injury lawyer who can guide you through the process of obtaining compensation for your injuries.
For more information on this study, click here.