NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — It’s the slushy olympics: You vs. the elements.

This week’s winter storm has left behind an obstacle course of ice, snow and puddles, CBS2’s Meg Baker reported.

To avoid slipping and falling, you must stay alert with every step.

Physical therapist Karena Wu said it’s best to walk like a penguin.

“You want to basically make sure that your center of gravity or the mass of your body is kind of right over your feet, because a lot of times people will get scared and they want to lean back,” Wu said.

Once the sun goes down and the temperature drops, puddles turn into solid ice.

Doctors are warning that many of the injuries they see are caused by black ice.

If you do slip and fall, Wu said, “I don’t want to land with my arm outstretched, because that’s when you injure the hand, the wrist and then all the way up to the shoulder. So you want to try to put your forearms down. Because it’s a bigger body part, it can absorb the forces.”

The Sanitation Department works in teams of two to sweep and shovel the muck into sewer drains before it freezes. The city is responsible for clearing the streets, bus stops and other public areas. Local businesses are required to clear their front sidewalks.

“Pushing most of the snow out of the way so that people are at least able to walk through without having any accidents,” said Miguel, a Sanitation Department employee.

Urgent care Dr. Jake Deutsch said it’s the time of year for broken bones.

“Make sure you have good gear,” he said. “Make sure that there’s traction on there. I like the idea of stepping into other people’s footprints, but even that, that doesn’t guarantee that you’re going to have good traction. So taking time is really crucial.”

Deutsch said patients have also come in with injuries to their eyes from salt coming off of salt trucks.

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