Matt Casey, staff writer
January 4, 2011 — It might be traditional winter fun, but tobogganing can turn dangerous if not done in a safe manner.
On Monday three teenagers were injured while tobogganing down a hill at Toronto's Earl Bales park. The ski hill is located on Bathurst street near Sheppard avenue west.
The teens were sliding down the hill at a high rate of speed when they collided with a metal pipe that supplies water to snow guns for the ski hill.
Jamie Rogers is from Toronto EMS, and was one of the responders to the accident. “Injuries were fairly minor, however all needed to be back boarded and transported to local hospital,” says Rogers.
The ski hill does have a sign posted that warns against tobogganing.
Accidents like this stress the importance of wearing a helmet. When participating in any downhill activities that involve a high amount of speed, a helmet is really the best line of defense for preventing a head injury.
“It's important to realize that children can be at risk of brain injury actually from sledding,” says Sarah Blades from Child Safety link in Moncton, New Brunswick. “We would recommend that adults and children wear a helmet when sledding and a properly fitting hockey helmet is your best choice,” adds Blades.
Even choosing the best sled is crucial. “We would suggest you use a sled you can steer. That's really important because if someone possibly falls off their own sled you can steer out of their way so you can avoid that collision,” says Blades.
It's important to monitor the weather as ice underneath the snow pack could lead to dangerous conditions. For a look at the weather in your area, head to our Canadian Cities Index.
With files from Andrea Stockton