Press release

Clear the pavements so we can get out say over 65s - ice is not nice for us

Sunday 19 December 2010

The headlines are full of stories of chaos on the roads and at airports, but what about those who just need to walk to the shops or take the dog out? As fresh snow falls, latest results from Saga’s Survey of more than 4,000 people aged over 65 reveal that icy pavements and paths are the biggest problem faced this weather.

Saga say that more must be done to make pavements and paths safe and not just the roads. While we need to keep our transport infrastructure moving, more consideration should be given to those who have to go about their everyday lives.

The top three problems for the over 65s during this winter weather are:

  • 1. Icy pavements and paths (45%)
  • 2. Keeping warm (23%)
  • 3. Getting to the shops (10%)

It is very worrying that nearly half of the over 65s may not be able to get out and nearly one in four have problems just keep warm, while one in ten cannot get to the shops. Saga question whether it is about time we considered prioritizing pavements and paths, as well as roads?

The survey also found that a quarter of respondents over 75 have received help during the recent snowy and icy weather from their family (24%) and/or neighbours (25%).

Saga Director-General, Ros Altmann, commented: “Many over 65s are marooned in their homes, because if they venture out they could find the icy pavements so treacherous they risk life and limb. We urge local authorities and communities to engage in a 'Big Snow-ciety' approach by turning their attention to treacherous pavements and paths and not just the roads. Many older people will be less likely to get in their car during this freeze and will therefore be on foot, so it is essential that pedestrians feel safe when popping to the shops. If you can help an elderly neighbour in this weather, please do.

“Despite battling with the elements, it is heart warming to hear of the nation offering a helping hand to one another during the freeze.”


For more information please contact the Saga Press Office on 01303 771529.



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