ice sickles on a house

Madison Emergency visits due to falls almost doubles during the winter months in comparison to the summer months. Ice/snow can contribute to this number. If you’re like me, your home has had ice buildup to the point of ice dams in your gutters and ice cycles that drip on your driveway, sidewalk, and front steps. The following three steps will help prevent you from the fall I experienced last night:

1. Eliminate ice. Despite the claims salt devastate your concrete, there are special types of ice melt that are better to use on concrete. All you have to do is throw it on the ice, let it sit for about an hour and then shovel the slushy ice away.

2. Ice dams will melt, drip onto the ground and cause the ground to be icy. Stop that from happening by melting the ice dam with calcium chloride ice melter. Make sure you do NOT use rock salt as it will damage paint and metal. Use a leg from a pair of pantyhose, fill it with calcium chloride and lay it vertically across the ice dam. The ice will slowly melt and a path will be cleared for underlying water to freely flow into your gutters. (see more here)

3. Ice is everywhere, so when you are walking outside take small steps to keep your center of balance underneath you, walk slowly and for extra balance keep your hands free, and pay attention to the hazards that may exist.

Overall, preventing falls will save you and our community thousands of dollars weekly! To give you ideas of what you can do to prevent falls, learn from an engineer at Madison Memorial Hospital to see what we do for ice. Please watch the video below, and make plans: