Sledding safety this snowstorm with tips from the National Safety Council

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(AP Photo/Mic Smith)

HARRISBURG, Pa (WHTM) — With Wednesday’s forecasted snowstorm, it’s more than likely kids and young adults will want to tear up the slopes and go sledding.

This year, experts are advising kids and their parents to stay safe on their sledding excursions. According to the Center on Injury Research at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, more than 20,000 kids younger than 19 are treated for sledding injuries on average each year.

Injuries often occur when the sled hits a stationary object or the child falls off. That’s why parents would be wise to purchase sleds that can be controlled with a steering mechanism and brakes.

Experts advise parents to supervise their children, especially if they’re under age 10. Make sure all sledders wear a helmet – sledding injuries often include skull fractures – and be sure to share these important guidelines with them so they can enjoy tobogganing and sledding safely.

  • Make sure all equipment is in good condition, free of sharp edges and cracks Sled on spacious, gently sloping hills with a level run-off at the end so the sled can safely stop
  • Check slopes for bare spots, holes, and obstructions, such as fences, rocks, poles, or trees
  • Do not sled on or around frozen lakes, streams, or ponds
  • Riders should sit or lay on their back on top of the sled with feet pointing downhill; never sled head first
  • Dress warmly, and wear thick gloves or mittens and heavy boots to protect against frostbite and injury

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