Beware the Icy Driveway

Happy Ending Alert: Don’t worry, the poor guy doesn’t get hurt. When he finally goes down, his head is well off the driveway. This video was taken by his wife. Thanks for your help, honey.

In our town we have some remarkably steep driveways. You’d have to be suicidal, to set foot on one of them if it’s coasted with ice. Not a nice gentle glide like this driveway in Virginia.

How do you avoid this?

Stay indoors: that should work.

11 comments on “Beware the Icy Driveway

  1. Funny you should mention steep icy driveways. I park in my apartment building’s underground garage, and the inbound and outbound ramps are very steep. So it’s VERY hazardous to try to get in and out of the garage when the snow or ice hasn’t been cleared. Once it took me three tries to get to the top of the outbound ramp — and once the outbound garage door closes behind you, there’s no way to get back in again! Two other times I slid down the inbound ramp into the wall, fortunately not smashing anything but losing a couple of paint chips here and there. Now I just don’t even try. Before I leave the house in the morning, I bundle up and go outside to check the garage ramps. If they look the least bit slippery, I call the other sacristan of my church and tell him I won’t be opening up at my usual time, and he fills in for me.

    1. I should have clarified that when I talked about sliding down the ramp I meant the CAR I was in slid down the ramp! 🙂

      I’ve taken a couple of bad personal slides on ice, though. In 1974, while on an inspection trip to Grand Forks AFB, I slid on white ice (I thought it was snow) and cracked a vertebra. What was really embarrassing was that one of the things I was inspecting was safety. My team chief wanted to take me to the Base Hospital, but I said, “Oh, no, there’s no way a safety inspector is going to be a reportable accident. Just get me to my feet.” It’s a miracle that I wasn’t paralyzed. I even finished the inspection — very bent over with a kind of Groucho Marx walk. And I served six more years in the Air Force, including being part of the evacuations of South Vietnam at the end of the war, not even knowing that I’d done any permanent damage, except that my back tended to give me a lot of pain and sometimes locked up when I had to stand still for more than a few minutes or carry heavy objects. When I finally separated from active duty, though, my X-rays showed that the whole bottom of my spine was bent sideways from where the vertebra had mended crooked. So I now have 20% VA disability and what I call a “crip tag” on my car. (Eek, ableism! That’s okay, I’m allowed to microagress myself … I think.)

      Then, thirty years later almost to the day, I slipped on some black ice coming out of church and cut my left knee open all the way to the bone. Four stitches. And when they told me at the hospital to go home, I saluted smartly and went to work — with blood all over the bottom of my beige wool skirt, which made a great conversation piece. The Chair of my department took one look and told me to go home. I saluted smartly and went up to my office. But finally the pain got too much for me and I did go home. Both of my classes had been canceled by this time anyway, since my pastor had called my department as I was being whisked away in the emergency vehicle.

      I do not like ice.

  2. Our driveway is just the size and slant of the one in the video except we have a small pebble mixture covering instead of level concrete. There is a steep hill to get out of my neighborhood but it is always one of the the first to get covered with salt in snow/icy weather. We have had a very mild winter so far this year. No snow and temperatures in the 50’s – nice.

  3. I’ve learned, because of my stroke, to walk like a penguin. It’s slower and awkward but safer.

    1. I don’t know where you live or how much ice you have to cope with, but please take care! A funny walk is better than a broken coccyx.

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