Spectrum: Over 20 slip and fall injuries reported in emergency rooms

Posted at 12:12 PM, Jan 15, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-16 04:28:32-05

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. -- While there have been reports of dozens of crashes and slide-offs Tuesday morning, several others have been hurt just walking.

Spectrum Health officials tell FOX 17 that as of noon Tuesday, they had seen over 20 patients in their emergency departments for injuries from slips and falls.

"We've seen a number of things, anywhere from bumps and bruises -- general things that happen when they fall -- something as serious as hip fractures," says Dr. Charles Gibson from Spectrum Acute Care.  "Sometimes people have had some hip fractures, injuries to their neck, and some of those more serious injuries require people being admitted to the hospital."

Before you take a step outside and eventually onto ice, just remember to penguin walk: "If you do have to get out today, make sure you take small steps and that you're very sure of your footing," says Meghan Crawley, Spectrum injury prevention and outreach coordinator. "have a wide stance. It helps keep your center of balance. Make sure you're wearing boots, or shoes with a really good sole on the bottom."

But if you do lose your step and fall, health officials recommend "RICE": Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation.

If, after you fall, the soreness does not go away after a few hours, go to the hospital. Spectrum Health asks that people with minor injuries consider using non-emergency venues like urgent care facilities or MedNow, where they will likely be seen sooner.

Sidewalks and parking lots are slowly getting salted, but rely much more on area property owners to take care of the icy conditions.