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Black Fri Tips to Shop Safely in Snow & Ice

The weather outside is frightful but those deals are too delightful--to pass up regardless of the weather. The Snow & Ice Management Association, the North American organization representing snow removal professionals, has issued its safety tips for the 2013-2014 winter weather season. The tips below address safe holiday shopping in snow and ice. SIMA also has tips on safe shoveling, safe walking in snow and ice and more.

For more information log onto or contact Sheri Singer, 703-346-7111.

The Snow & Ice Management Association's Tips for Safe Black Friday Shopping in Areas with the Snow & Ice

Move over Black Friday, Thanksgiving Thursday is here to stay. While Black Friday remains the top shopping day of the holiday weekend, according to the National Retail Federation with more than 88 million consumers shopping in stores and online; more than 35 million shoppers headed to the stores on Thanksgiving Day.

If you live in an area that gets snow and ice over Thanksgiving, you may have a treacherous shopping experience. That's where members of the Snow & Ice Management Association (SIMA) can help. They represent snow management professionals that help clear snow and ice from shopping center and mall parking lots.

"Winter storms can affect holiday shoppers planning to hit the stores on Thanksgiving Thursday and Black Friday," said Martin B. Tirado, CAE, CEO, SIMA. "These shoppers are lazar-focused on getting the best deal and they aren't thinking about what's on the ground as they dash across icy, snowy parking lots or sidewalks creating a hazardous situation."

SIMA has these tips on how to stay safe when holiday shopping in winter weather.

TIP #1: Stay warm and dry. If you are going to be waiting in line for a store to open, make sure you are dressed warmly. Layer up and if it's still snowing or sleeting, add a waterproof outside layer to keep you dry. Most importantly, wear flat shoes that provide good traction when walking in snow and ice.

TIP #2: Protect the goods. Once you score a bargain on your new flat screen TV, think about how to move it safely to your car. The extra weight of your TV, other packages or even carrying a small child will alter your center of gravity and affect your balance--potentially leading to a fall. Be especially careful when transferring your weight from the sidewalk to the curb. Protect not just the goods you buy, but also yourself.

TIP #3: A la carte. If you get so many great deals that you need a shopping cart to move the purchases into your car, be extremely careful of the snow and ice on sidewalks and parking lots. Push and lift the shopping cart as needed but be careful of the ice and snow on the ground. Be aware of moving vehicles including snow plows as well as other pedestrians around you.

TIP #4: The hazards of sidewalks. It is so easy to be distracted on Black Friday thinking about what you want to buy. But keep your mind on the immediate task at hand--getting from your car into the store. Be particularly careful at the store entrance since it may be crowded with shoppers. Also pay special attention to sidewalks where water can drip and freeze quickly on cold surfaces.

TIP #5: Navigating night shopping. If you are waiting in line before the sun comes up or shopping at night, keep in mind that as temperatures drop due to less sun, pavement temperatures can drop too, causing ice. Be careful when walking at night or at sunrise on surfaces that might be frozen.

TIP #6: Inside hazards. So now you've made it safely through the parking lot and walked into the building--so you can breathe a sigh of relief. Not so fast. Just because you made it inside, doesn’t mean you can’t slip and fall. Wet boots and water tracked into the building especially near the entrance can create slippery conditions. Tread carefully both outside and inside the building.

A few additional things to remember--parking decks can be hazardous because snow and ice can blow in through the sides and accumulate. And although the snow and ice has been removed, you still need to watch for melted snow that refreezes to create ice. This may occur near roof overhangs, building drains, and in parking lot drainage areas.

Following these tips will help ensure that you survive the 2013 holiday shopping season safely so you can celebrate the holidays with your friends and families. For more snow and ice removal tips, visit SIMA.


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