Beware icy conditions underfoot

7th August, 2014

In recent times the ‘blame culture’ in this country has led to numerous urban myths; one of the most well-known being that home owners could be held accountable if someone slips or falls as a result of them clearing snow and ice from steps, pathways and public spaces near their abode. We can put this myth to bed once and all by saying that it is very unlikely that you will be prosecuted, as long as you have cleared the path carefully and safely.

Top tips for preventing slips:

  • Use additional salt to clear snow and ice from steep pavements and steps
  • Do not use water. This may refreeze and turn to black ice - increasing the chances of an accident occurring
  • A tablespoon of ordinary table or dishwasher salt for each square metre of path should be enough to melt snow and prevent black ice from forming
  • Avoid spreading salt onto lawns or plants, as this may cause damage
  • Alternatives to salt are sand or ash. Whilst these won't stop a path from icing over, they will increase grip underfoot
  • Do not pile snow and ice where it is likely to obstruct pathways and drains

Where possible it pays to get out early to clear any snow and ice that has formed. By removing the top layer of snow early in the morning it allows daytime temperatures to melt the ice beneath it and allows you to spread salt before nightfall so as to stop it from refreezing.

Most councils will provide winter services to help clear roads and pavements in built up areas, but if you are a homeowner, it's worth ensuring the area surrounding your home is safe for you and visitors. If you're a business, Ice Watch can of course help with a winter management plan to ensure you have total peace of mind.

Remember: People have a responsibility to be careful themselves when walking on snow and ice, so don't be put off helping neighbours with snow clearance this winter; especially the elderly and vulnerable.

Caution icy surface sign

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