Storm unavoidable, storm-related injures are not

Print
Email
|

by Brian Farrell, 13News Now

WVEC.com

Posted on January 28, 2014 at 12:36 AM

Updated Tuesday, Jan 28 at 5:54 AM

VIRGINIA BEACH -- The big chill is back in the ABC13 viewing area.

A winter storm warning includes most of the viewing area and many parts of the region are bracing for a lot of snow.

Where there is snow and ice, there is chance for injury, some slight, some more serious.

"The falls I've seen, say in the last week with the last snow was mainly outstretched arms," said Randy Villarreal, MD, who works at Patient First on Indian River Road. "We saw some broken shoulders. We saw some elbow sprains."

With Winter Storm: Round 2 about to make its way into Hampton Roads and northeastern North Carolina, Villarreal offered some advice that could help people avoid getting hurt during and after the snowfall.

"Walking like a penguin is the recommendation," Villarreal said, when it comes to treading on snow-covered or (possibly) icy surfaces. "You walk with your feet just  pointed out slightly and arms to your sides just a little bit, and you want to take small steps, taking your time."

Snow removal can be problematic. Often, people assume snow is lighter than it is. In an effort to spend minimal time out in the cold, many will go big when clearing sidewalks or driveways.

"We recommend small shovels. Ergonomic shovels would be great. If you can find a push shovel, that's actually the best. You don't have to do any lifting with those," Villarreal explained.

If you do have to lift, you can save your back -- and possibly prevent strains -- by lifting with your legs. Removing snow continually throughout a storm, rather than waiting until the storm passes, also helps in terms of keeping shovels light.

"Afterwards, don't minimize the fact that you were exposed to the cold," Villarreal told 13News Now. "You can -- and it's recommended that you relax for a bit."

Villarreal said, if needed, a pain reliever such as Ibuprofen or Motrin can soothe muscles.

 

Print
Email
|