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Winter Injuries

We are all facing challenges this year that we’ve never gone through before. These challenges are becoming even more apparent with the holidays approaching. With fewer of our normal winter activities available to us and limited opportunities to socialize with others in person, more of us may be headed outside or trying new things to pass the time until life gets back to normal.

Winter weather in many places across the United States makes injuries more common due to the conditions outdoors and the activities we engage in. The cold, snow, and ice in many areas can lead to many different types of injuries, strains, accidents, or other incidents.

Here are some of the most common winter injuries.

Slips and falls

We all know in our heads that ice and snow are slippery, sometimes the danger of ice and snow may not be immediately apparent. Slips, trips, and falls are some of the most common incidents every year, and ice and snow just make serious injuries that much more likely.

Falling on ice or snow may produce a range of injuries, from mild aching to sprained backs to broken bones. As we age, our bodies are even more susceptible to serious injuries from a fall. The law mandates that property owners and employers must maintain safe conditions in parking lots, sidewalks, steps, entryways, and other walkways. If they fail to take reasonable measures to make their premises safe, and a person falls and suffers and injury, they may be held liable.

If you have been seriously injured by slipping and falling in an area where you believe the owner failed to take reasonable steps to make their premises safe, you may wish to file a personal injury claim.

Car accidents

Driving in the winter, especially around the holidays, is the trifecta of risk: increased traffic, shorter daylight, and more ice and snow. This increased risk inevitably results in more traffic collisions resulting in injuries. However, there are steps you can take to reduce that risk.

First and foremost, make smart decisions about when you drive. If the weather is snowy or extremely cold after a rainfall, avoid driving until the local road authorities have had a chance to sand, salt, or scrape the main thoroughfares. Avoid traveling at night, dawn, or dusk if possible to reduce the time you are driving in the dark, especially if your eyesight is limited. Finally, avoid traveling at peak times, when more people are on the road, such as the Friday night before a holiday weekend, at rush hour, or at noon on a weekend.

However, even the most careful drivers can get into collisions, particularly in the winter. If you hit ice and begin sliding, remember not to accelerate or spin the wheel to try to get control again. Lift off the accelerator, let the car coast while pressing down on the brakes. Most modern cars have anti-locking brakes, so there is no need to pump. Let the car come to a complete stop. If you have slid off a road or collided with another car or object, wait until the vehicle stops moving, check to make sure everyone in your car is okay, and get out of the car. If you are injured, seek medical help immediately.


It may seem ironic to be burned during the coldest part of the year, but it’s surprisingly common. During cold months, we’re all firing up our baseboards, fireplaces, and space heaters, and while these heat sources make our homes more comfortable, they’re also the culprits for common burns. Sitting too close to a fireplace, falling asleep against a heater, or even more innocuous use could result in burns.

Some products are more risk-prone than others to burn users. In 2019, an Australian man was hospitalized with second-degree burns across 20 percent of his body because he fell asleep with an electric blanket on that caught on fire by the morning. The heating elements in items like electric blankets can overheat, especially as they age, and create a risk. Some manufacturers may be responsible for negligence, as well, depending on the type of error in the product.

While many winter injuries may be avoided with care, it’s not always possible. If you’ve been seriously injured in cases like the ones above and believe there is significant responsibility on another party, you may want to seek help from a personal injury lawyer to help you determine if you have a case.

Legal services are available on a contingent-fee basis. If there is no recovery, there is no fee or costs charged. The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely on advertisements. The information and links on this website are for general information purposes only. No information on this website should be taken as professional legal advice or used to establish the existence of an attorney/client relationship. Every individual's case is different and will be fact-dependent. Please consult with the attorneys at Gorny Dandurand, LC to see how the information on this website may be applicable to your particular situation.

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