• Heavy snow cleanup leads to spike in snow clearing injuries


    FRAMINGHAM, Mass. - A spike in 911 calls for snow clearing related injuries almost always goes up after a major storm.

    After a storm like the one we saw fall overnight Wednesday into Thursday, the heavy and wet snow poses a danger if not cleared properly.

    Medical professionals say its not uncommon to see anywhere from muscle pains to severed limbs.

    "We see people who have over done it, (they'll) have chest pain, arm pain, back pain, neck pain, or generally don't feel well," said Shawn Brennan, a Brewster Ambulance paramedic.

    As cleanup continues across the state, many were left with several inches, some places saw as much as more than a foot of heavy, dense snow accumulate.

    Veteran Brewster Ambulance paramedics Adam Shanahan and Shawn Brennan have seen their share of snow-related calls - some with fatal outcomes.

    They say the number of 911 calls have increased since the snow began to fall.

    "There's a bunch of different types of snow - heavy snow, light snow - some people just like to do it all at once when they really should be taking breaks," said Shanahan. "We had a gentleman last year that was out snow blowing a week after he had a cardiac surgery, a heart surgery, and he didn't listen to any of his relatives or neighbors and he was out snow blowing and had another heart attack." 

    "We actually did a call where a gentleman was clearing snow at one of his properties, reached into (the snowblower) to unjam some ice and actually had his fingers amputated," said Brennan.

    In Framingham, many residents say while they didn't lose power, they spent hours clearing snow from their homes, sidewalks and cars. 

    "You gotta bend your knees and watch what you do with your back so you don't hurt yourself with this kind of heavy snow," said Framingham resident Maureen Baer.

    Paramedics advise that if you have any health conditions that could be aggravated by shoveling and clearing snow, that you ask someone else to do it - its worth sparing your body of such a strenuous task.

    "Id recommend to have the neighborhood kid shovel your driveway," said Brennan.

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