January 22, 2021

Twelve tips to move around the city in an urban snowfall


The snowfall that these days is felt in Madrid will be remembered for decades as the most abundant not only in what we have been in the XXI century, but also of the last fifty years. Heavy snowfalls are not common in our cities, so the inhabitants of the capital are not used to them and therefore poorly prepared.

Battles of balls, burnt clutches and wet masks in the biggest snowfall in 50 years in Madrid

Battles of balls, burnt clutches and wet masks in the biggest snowfall in 50 years in Madrid

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Urbanites we ignore the fundamental rules to act in these situations, especially to move with ease and safety through the streets of the city, something that in towns and small cities are not unknown. And as a result of this ignorance, a series of accident dangers arise that can become serious.

Therefore, and based on the recommendations of the DGT, Civil Guard and the Emergency Service of the Community of Madrid, we present the following twelve recommendations to move in an urban environment when the snow has completely colonized it.

1. Try to walk in the center of the street

Basic and fundamental rule when it has snowed a lot. The reason is the accumulations of snow on balconies, roofs, canopies, gutters, etc. Heavy snow that will presumably be frozen, so if it falls it can do us a lot of damage.

Especially in the coming days, when the thaw is progressive and stalactites form. Its fall has caused deaths on several occasions. Whenever you can, you should walk through the center of the road and if you have to go through the sidewalks, try to stay away from overhangs and cornices.

2. Avoid groves and wooded walks

Likewise, the trees are sure to be heavily laden with snow, especially cedars and firs, as well as pine trees. Three things can happen; Either a branch breaks or the entire trunk breaks or a piece of snow or ice falls on you. All three are serious and dangerous, so avoid these areas.

3. Do not go through areas where the sun does not shine

If the sun does not shine and the extremely low temperatures continue, the snow will transform into ice, creating extremely slippery plates and therefore at risk of falls that can lead to severe trauma. Avoid going through these areas as much as possible.

4. Always try to go through the most beaten areas

The best path is the one where other people have already passed and the ground is pasty, between water and mud; it’s dirty but safe. There you will not find ice sheets and you will not slip.

5. Don’t wear boots or shoes with a flat sole

In any case, you must pay attention to the way you wear shoes to ensure the footprint to avoid slipping. Do not use flat leather soles, this is loafers or ankle boots, and instead opt for rubber with drawings, the more marked the better. And of course, if you have it, use a suitable boot, relegating the sports.

6. Dress appropriately

Proper clothing is essential; don’t underestimate the cold by wearing light or permeable clothing. Think that snow, despite its solid appearance, is water and will end up calming you. Put on the thickest socks you have, tight-fitting gloves, and don’t forget your hat and scarf, as the extremities suffer especially from having little blood supply. Bundle up warm and waterproof as much as possible.

7. Keep the mobile close to your body

Do not leave the mobile phone in the outer pockets because the battery at very low temperatures consumes faster as its components solidify, which implies an additional effort in the transmission of electrons. It is better to carry it very warm in the inner pockets, near the chest or stomach to maintain its temperature.

8. If it’s sunny, protect lips, eyes and face

A great day of sun and snow may make you want to go outside, but remember that snow is like a million mirrors that bounce UVA radiation towards your face and your eyes like a solar lamp. Always wear a sunscreen, lip cream, and sunglasses if you want to avoid burns.

9. Do not take motorcycles or bicycles

The stability of these vehicles leaves a lot to be desired in snow and ice and it is a real unconsciousness to ride them. Remember that falls can be very serious.

10. If you take the car, always with chains

Apart from the fact that fines can reach 200 euros when driving without chains in places where it is mandatory, you will save yourself being hung or hanging in the middle of the streets, skating on the slopes or ending up stamped or stamped against a wall due to a slip . In this tweet the DGT teaches you how to place them:

11. Don’t ever put very hot water on the windshield

If you get up and your car’s windshield is icy, don’t pour hot water on it: the thermal contrast could break it down and create a serious problem for you. You must rub the ice in the glass with kitchen salt until it melts completely.

12. Opt for public transport, especially the subway

Better if you forget about the car these days and bet on the subway or the bus, although on the slopes, the latter can present problems with ice. The metro on the other hand is a hot and safe option, as long as the authorities do not withdraw their recommendation.

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