Freezing rain leads to spike in slip-and-fall calls
Ambulance crews and hospital emergency departments were tied up with a large number of slips and falls Tuesday, Alberta Health Services officials say.
Paramedics responded to 89 slip-and-fall calls in the Edmonton metro area alone after freezing rain turned streets and sidewalks into ice rinks. On a typical winter day, Edmonton emergency services would respond to an average of five calls for slips and falls on ice, AHS spokesman Kerry Williamson wrote in an email Wednesday.
“EMS crews in Edmonton along with hospital emergency departments experienced extremely high demand yesterday, due in large part to slippery sidewalks and roads caused by freezing rain,” he wrote.
Albertans wind up in hospital after falls on ice and snow at higher rates than people in most other provinces, statistics show. Nearly 41 Albertans per 100,000 were hospitalized after slips and falls between 2011 and 2016, according to statistics from the Canadian Institute for Health Information.
Only Saskatchewan and Prince Edward Island had higher rates. Alberta’s rate was nearly three times that of Ontario.