That fresh snow is irresistible to sledders. However, sledding could be dangerous for many reasons. Seriously taking your safety allows you to have many hours of fun in the snow, especially if you have an extra day or two because the snow caused a free day from work, school, and errands.
Hypothermia is a real danger, especially for children who probably won’t come inside when they get cold. Even some adults refuse to go inside when they get cold, and by then, it could be too late. Dress in layers. Long underwear is made of a material that wicks sweat away from you while keeping your body warm. Over that, a t-shirt and a flannel shirt help to keep the warmth in. A jacket that keeps the wind out should top it off. Wear wool socks on your feet and make sure your boots are not too tight. Mittens are better than gloves for keeping your hands warm. And don’t forget a warm hat.
Check the Sledding Area
Make sure the hill you choose doesn’t end on a road or a river or pond with unsafe ice. Once the sledding trail gets packed down, it’s like ice – you won’t be able to stop quickly. Check the sledding area for rocks, sticks, boulders and other items that could cause damage if you were to hit them. And make sure trees are far away from the sledding area – if you lose control of the sled, you could find yourself wrapped around a tree.
One at a Time
Make sure the person before you is off the sledding trail before you plop down on your sled. If you run into someone, both of you could suffer injuries. For the same reason, keep the trail back up the hill a fair distance from the sledding trail.
Go Inside When You Get Cold!
Finally, go inside when you start to feel cold. If you start shivering, it’s almost too late. Once inside, curl up with a blanket and a warm cup of hot cocoa on your favorite sofa and enjoy a movie.