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Have A Nice Trip - Or Is That Ice Trip? Dozens End Up At Emergency Rooms After Falling On Sidewalks, Roads

Beware of ice - especially in the morning.

Despite the current warming trend, temperatures still will be below freezing at night and early in the day, creating slick sidewalks and roads.

Dozens of people figured that out Thursday.

Emergency rooms at area hospitals were busy fixing broken wrists, ankles and other body parts after people slipped on the ice and hurt themselves.

Everyone who was treated at Sacred Heart Medical Center’s emergency room from 1 a.m. until 8 a.m. suffered from ice-related injuries, spokesman Tom Sofio said. All 15 were treated and released.

Staffers at other area hospitals were just as busy.

Ten people came to the Valley Hospital and Medical Center Thursday after slipping on the ice. Numbers weren’t available for Deaconess Medical Center, but staffers there are seeing an increase in the number of patients treated for weather-related falls.

“We’re so busy we can’t keep up,” one nurse at Holy Family’s emergency center said. Before noon on Thursday, staffers there had already treated a dozen people for fractured wrists, back injuries and broken legs.

The Washington State Patrol responded to three collisions Thursday morning, but as many as 40 the day before due to snow, ice and freezing rain, Sgt. Chris Powell said.

Spokane police showed up at 25 accident scenes early Thursday morning. That’s more than usual lately, said Sgt. Anthony Giannetto, but nothing out of the ordinary for a normal winter.

The National Weather Service in Spokane predicted light snow Thursday night and this morning. Temperatures are expected to be in the upper 30s Friday and lower 40s Saturday. Rain showers are likely.

While daytime temperatures are expected to be 5 to 10 degrees warmer than usual, it’ll still be cold enough at night to create icy roads, said Brian Avery, a hydrologist at the National Weather Service.

In such conditions, try not to hurry, said Anne McKeon, a spokeswoman for Holy Family Hospital.

Don’t drive if you don’t have to, and wear shoes with non-slick tread.

“Walking slow doesn’t mean you’re not going to fall if you don’t have the right shoes on,” she said.

, DataTimes



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