Posts Tagged ‘ice’

Walk Like A Penguin

January 28, 2016

We all know that walking on icy streets and sidewalks during the winter is treacherous. Wrist fractures, hip fractures, and strains and sprains are more common than ever during the winter. If you want some good strategies for preventing falls on the ice, walk like a penguin.

Keep your arms apart, your feet spread slightly, and take short, even shuffling steps. Place your foot flat, rather than hitting with the heel. Keep your center of gravity directly over your feet. You may look like a penguin, but how many penguins fall on the ice?

You are more likely to fall while getting in or out of your car, or coming inside and stepping on tile with wet shoes. Any outdoor slopes, however slight, increase fall risks.

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Once you’ve got the penguin shuffle down, here are important about when falls occur and how to prevent them.

  • Hold onto the car with two or three point contact until both feet are securely planted. Leave hand-carry items in the car until you are ready to shut the door. Avoid using your elbow to shut the door because it might be enough to throw you off balance. Set hand-carry items down first, get steady and then shut the door gently.
  • Avoid carrying heavy items over ice and snow. Take time to get a cart.
  • Carry purses and briefcases low and by your side. Keep your hands out of your pockets for better balance; it also provides a chance to either recover from a slip or brace for the impact.
  • Do not use a cell phone while walking on icy surfaces. Doing so raises and shifts the center of gravity and reduces focus. Stop in a safe location first before making a call.
  • Wear shoes with good traction, or better yet, don Microspikes or some other traction device. Footwear should fit properly, (not loose) and have low heels.
  • If you use a cane, consider getting a spike for the tip of your cane, so the cane does not slip, causing you to lose your footing.
  • Be sure to wipe shoes thoroughly when entering buildings with tile floors. Simply walking over carpet won’t dry shoes off immediately, especially near entrances where the carpet is wet or damp from outdoor traffic.

Pay attention, take your time and use traction enhancing devices to stay safe this winter. And remember, in icy conditions, penguins rule!

“Ice” Too Slippery For Penguins!

February 4, 2015

The Penguin Post has learned that a group of penguins in England has been temporarily removed from an aquarium exhibit because the fake ice flooring was ironically too slippery.

Staff at The Deep, in Hull, have now used a special anti-slip covering so the seven Gentoo penguins do not fall over. The birds were removed from public display after some multiple”skidding” incidents on the new icy surface. A spokeswoman for The Deep said: ”The penguins were taken out of the display on 6 January to do some routine maintenance work but, when we put them back, the covering did not have enough grip in it for them to stick on to and we had a bit of a skidding, slipping and sliding situation.

A Gentoo penguin at The Deep, in Hull

A Gentoo penguin at The Deep, in Hull

Andrew McLeod, deputy curator at the aquarium, said the penguins were ”excited” about being back in the display after repairs were carried out to the enclosure. Mr McLeod said: ”We watched them hop around and saw them scrabbling a little bit on the slopes. As they turned quickly, they do this thing where they lean forward and one of them ended up face down, he ended up on his front.

”Some of the other birds were scrabbling and slipping over and we thought, ‘it’s far too slippy’. “We’ve put some more grip down into the paint and they should be a lot happier. They were literally in there for only 10 minutes and then they were taken out again straight away.”

Gentoos are the fastest swimming species of penguin – reaching speeds of 36kmph – and can dive to depths of 170 metres. They can grow up to 80cms in height. This colony went on display at The Deep in March last year after being born and raised at an educational facility in Texas.

They were flown to Hull to live in the exhibition called Kingdom of Ice – which spans three floors and includes a swimming pool, diving pool, beach area, nesting area and outdoor balcony, and hopefully now a non-slip floor. The penguins are scheduled to be returned to their enclosure by February 9

Walk Like A Penguin

February 25, 2013

The Penguin Post has noticed that recently various municipalities around the country have offered advice to their citizens to “walk like a penguin” for safety’s sake in this winter’s ice and snow.  Be it to and from parking lots, on an icy street, between buildings, or anywhere else slick and outdoors to avoid slipping and falling.  This week in the mid-west, after being belted with two near record snowstorms the Emergency Services physicians at Providence Medical Center and Saint John Hospital in Kansas City have offer the following waddling safety tips to keep in mind:  Use special care when entering and exiting vehicles; assume all wet, dark areas on pavements are slick.  Walk in designated walkways as much as possible. Taking shortcuts over snow piles and other frozen areas can be hazardous (unless you are actually a penguin). Look ahead when you walk. During bad weather, avoid boots or shoes with smooth soles and heels. Instead, wear shoes or boots that provide traction on snow and ice.  Point your feet out slightly like a penguin! Spreading your toes (webbed or otherwise) out slightly while walking on ice increases your center of gravity. Bend slightly and walk flat-footed with your center of gravity over your feet (like the penguins pictured below).  Extend your arms (flippers) out to your sides to maintain balance.  Keep your hands out of your pockets! Hands in pockets while walking decreases your center of gravity and balance (besides penguins don’t have pockets).  Take short steps or shuffle for stability (very penguin-like).  If you fall; try to avoid landing on your knees, wrists, or spine.  Try and keep both feet on the ground as you exit and enter your parked vehicle, and if possible keep waddling.

For safety's sake walk like a penguin

For safety’s sake walk like a penguin