Nature: Safety Message – Don’t Fall for Falling Leaves
As the fall season approaches, trees covered with colorful leaves paint the landscape in vibrant shades of red, yellow and orange.
Leaves are beautiful when they are on the trees but can become a dangerous safety hazard when they fall on the ground and roadways. Add water and you have a treacherous walking and driving condition. The combination of wet roads and leaves results in a slippery surface which is similar to and as dangerous black ice. Be knowledgeable and remaining alert is a top priority for anyone walking or driving during these conditions.
Helpful Hints While Walking:
(1) Keep you weight evenly distributed on both feet and take small, shuffling steps;
(2) Wear proper footwear. Avoid wearing shoes with worn or smooth soles;
(3) Use hand rails where available;
(4) Be mindful of walking across wet, leaf covered surfaces; and
(5) Be aware that leaves often obscure rocks and other debris.
If you lose you footing, try to relax. Tensing your body is more likely to cause injury. If you are holding an object, drop it and do not try to break you fall. Taking the impact of your failing body on an outstretched hand, elbow, or knee may result in broken bones.
Helpful Hints While Driving;
(1) Match your speed to current conditions. Treat wet, leaf covered roads as if they were icy covered and match speeds accordingly;
(2) Smoothness counts. Avoid making sudden stops, starts or directional changes on wet, leaf covered roads;
(3) In dry, wind conditions, slow down and stay alert;
(4) Traction depends upon the contact that the tire has with the ground, so check your tires to make sure that you have good tread depth and proper inflation pressures; and
(5) In a skid – Take your foot off the gas and brake while turning into the direction of the skid. Once the vehicle starts to respond, apply brakes gently, if you do not have anti-locking brakes. Apply brakes firmly and allow the anti-locking braking system to work if your vehicle has one.
Always Remember – Safety Begins with You!