SAN ANTONIO – Winter weather has caused dangerous conditions for people not only on the road but for those on foot too, San Antonio officials have warned.
The City of San Antonio on Monday said firefighters have received “a high number of emergency calls” for people slipping and falling due to the snow and ice that covered the area during the storm.
Officials said solid sheets of ice under the snow can cause people to fall — an injury that could be as painful as being in a car accident, according to a study from Brigham Young University.
Craig Nuttall, a nurse practitioner who was one of the researchers in the study, told KSL.com that slipping and falling could result in traumatic brain injuries, as well as broken bones and hip injuries.
One San Antonio health system said the hospital’s emergency rooms are seeing “a ton” of calls for slips and falls, ranging from minor injuries to concussions to fractures.
Elizabeth Allen, a spokesperson for University Health, told KSAT that medical staff members are also treating a few cases of cold exposure and hypothermia.
“Staffing is at a lower number than usual but a number of our team stayed overnight at the hospital to avoid the risky commute,” Allen told KSAT. “Between that and the fact that overall ER volume is down, we are in good shape to continue providing service.”
With temperatures staying below freezing, the ice is likely not going anywhere soon.
The San Antonio Fire Department said people heading outside should walk slowly and carefully, and wear boots or other shoes that are slip-resistant if possible.
Other tips include walking as flat-footed as possible, avoid uneven surfaces if possible, avoid steps or curbs with ice on them, and watch for slippery floors.
Fire officials are also warning people to not walk down the middle of a road where there could be traffic.
“If you get injured there could be a delay in response so play it safe,” officials said in a Facebook post on Monday morning.
The San Antonio - Bexar County Office of Emergency Management issued a public safety alert Sunday afternoon, warning residents that all major highways and other roads are closed due to the icy conditions.
Residents are urged to avoid travel and stay home, as the wintry weather continues to impact the South Texas region.
As always, Your Weather Authority team will keep you updated. You can get the very latest forecast and check out the interactive radar anytime by bookmarking our weather page and downloading the KSAT Weather Authority App - available for both Apple and Android devices.