Madison Dagg and Ava Thompson, both Grade 5 students, at North Saanich’s Deep Cove Elementary experience competing emotions as they come down the school’s impromptu sledding hill on Tuesday, Jan. 14. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)

Sledding injures tens of thousands of children each year

Several municipalities in Canada and the United States have banned sledding

More than 20,000 children were treated in emergency rooms for tobogganing related injuries between 1997 and 2007, according to a study by the Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio.

Research published in the journal Injury Prevention pegs the figure at 33,000 for the United States and U.S. research from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission published by Brain Injury Canada places the figure at more 160,000 sledding, snow tubing, and tobogganing-related injuries treated at hospital emergency rooms, doctors’ offices and clinics in 2007.

These widely varying numbers have inspired several municipalities in the United States and Canada to ban the activity during the winter, but the actual share of such municipalities is likely minuscule.

Greater Victoria locals, for their part, do not seem to be too concerned.

RELATED: Saanich sinkhole one of several hazards that kept crews busy on ‘Snowmageddon Day 2’

RELATED: Toboggan versus rat: Startling collision on Victoria road

During last year’s Snowmageddon event in February, local hills were teeming with tobogganers both small and large, be they human or a rat that ended up in the lap of a tobogganer.

A informal survey of two local shops on the Saanich Peninsula also suggests people are eager to get in on the action. Both stores had sold out all sleds.


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