- On the First Day of Christmas, My Lawyer Gave to Me: Advice to Stay Injury-Free 🎶
On the First Day of Christmas, My Lawyer Gave to Me: Advice to Stay Injury-Free 🎶
As personal injury attorneys we’ve seen it all – slip-and-fall incidents that cause horrible, debilitating pain, deadly car crashes resulting in tragic consequences to drivers and passengers alike, negligent workplaces where hardworking employees have been seriously hurt through no fault of their own, and the bad results of improper or inadequate care provided by unprofessional medical workers. Though we hate to say it, this festive time of year isn’t exempt from all of these types of tragic mishaps and no doubt many more.
In fact, according to ValuePenguin, nearly one in three Americans will be hurt in some way during the holiday season – ranging from minor cuts and scrapes while opening gifts, to burns caused by cooking or candles, even to frightening falls from step stools, ladders or rooftops! Of those who get hurt, nearly a quarter end up seeking care in an emergency room, urgent care clinic, or another medical facility! As such, we thought we’d take a few moments to touch upon some advice that we hope will help you and those you love avoid experiencing many of the most common holiday-related injuries that arise this time of year.
Tips to Help Prevent Slip-and-Fall Accidents
Anyone can take a spill on slippery surfaces, but older people are often most seriously hurt when they lose their balance and hit the floor or another object on the way down. As AARP reports, one in every four Americans over age 65 will experience a fall in the coming year. And whether that happens as the result of an unexpected household accident, a freak tumble on the pickleball court, or in a shopping center that has failed to properly remove snow or ice, a surprise fall can be dangerous at any age. So, here’s some advice on ways to stay safe when you’re out and about this holiday season.
First and foremost, be aware of your surroundings when you’re walking. It’s easy to become distracted by text messages, to be tripped up by errant pets, or to find yourself losing your balance when flashing holiday decorations draw your eyes away from icy patches on sidewalks. So, pay attention, wear your glasses or contact lenses if you need them, put on shoes or boots with good traction characteristics, and don’t forget to hold onto railings whenever you’re climbing stairs. If you need to use a cane or a walker to feel secure when stepping out, be sure to do so. There’s no shame in asking for help if you become uncertain on your feet anytime, and you’ll feel even worse if you need to spend the holidays away from home in a hospital bed.
Staying Safe on the Highway is Crucial
“Over the river and through the woods to grandmother’s house we go,” are immortal lyrics from a classic 19th-century carol. These days, instead of setting forth in a horse-drawn sleigh, getting to grandmother’s house is usually accomplished by hopping into the family car, turning on the GPS navigation to avoid traffic jams or other highway problems, and (carefully!) putting the pedal to the metal.
When you do start making your various holiday journeys this year to celebrate the season with friends, family, and other loved ones, be sure to wear your seatbelts (as required by Michigan state law), put your cell phone in a place where you won’t be tempted to respond to text messages (or to pick it up at all while driving, which would also be against state law), and have a winter highway safety kit tucked away in the trunk to be prepared for any emergencies that might arise while you’re on the road.
Just last week we itemized several other important safety steps you can take to protect yourself and your passengers at this time of year. Along with those useful tips, among the other best pieces of advice we you’ll consider are the following:
Reduce your speed whenever driving on slippery surfaces to allow yourself time to compensate for slower braking and the possibility of skidding on turns. Check your tire treads for wear and replace worn tires if needed; use snow tires or chains if you find yourself in an area where heavy snowfall is frequent, but remember that studded snow tires are effectively prohibited in Michigan. Be especially cautious when traveling alongside or behind snow plows. For more timely winter driving tips, the Michigan State Police have assembled this helpful web page which we urge you to check out when you have a spare moment.
Don’t Over-Exert Yourself Shoveling Snow or Celebrating
We’ve all heard of friends or relatives who have experienced back pain or suffered from other unforeseen injuries at this time of year – whether caused by clearing the driveway of snow before guests are set to arrive, or simply by the stress of other holiday preparations. Heart attacks are a surprisingly common wintertime hazard, and AARP reports that for some inexplicable reason cardiac-related events seem to peak in the week between Christmas and New Year’s Eve. So, take a moment to take a breath … and pace yourself – whether you’re attending the annual office holiday party or spreading salt on an icy sidewalk. That way, when the ball drops at midnight on December 31st, you’ll be able to look back and be grateful your seasonal celebrations took place without triggering major health issues this year!
Using a Designated Driver or Ride-Sharing Service is Always Smart
You may have heard that many Michiganders have been known to tip back a few hot toddies or enjoy some cheerful glasses of doctored eggnog over the holidays. If you’re among them, please consider having a designated driver ready to take you home once the evening’s festivities come to an end. If no one in your group wants to be a mandatory teetotaler this year, there are always convenient options like Uber, Lyft, or other ride-sharing companies. (You might recall that last year Mike Morse Law Firm offered 1,000 free rides on Uber to get folks home safely on New Year’s Eve.) Of course, if you’re feeling especially generous this holiday season you can also hire a limousine and make a memorable night of it!
If Your Festivities Take a Turn, You Know Who to Call…
Regardless of how you choose to celebrate this year, we wish you a safe and enjoyable season! But if someone acting irresponsibly should cause you or someone you care about to be injured through no fault of your own, we’ll be here for you anytime you need us. Simply pick up the phone and dial 855-MIKE-WINS (855-645-3946) – we’ll be here to answer your call. Of course, you can always get in touch with us online anytime, too. Happy holidays!
Content checked by Mike Morse, personal injury attorney with Mike Morse Injury Law Firm. Mike Morse is the founder of Mike Morse Law Firm, the largest personal injury law firm in Michigan. Since being founded in 1995, Mike Morse Law Firm has grown to 150 employees, served 25,000 clients, and collected more than $1 billion for victims of auto, truck and motorcycle accidents. The main office is in Southfield, MI but you can also find us in Detroit, Sterling Heights and many other locations.