How to Keep Workers Safe Outside During Winter
As picturesque as a winter wonderland sounds, the colder months provide some of the harshest and most dangerous conditions for outdoor workers. There are many hazards to consider.
From nasty slip and falls to frostbite and life-threatening cases of hypothermia, the risks are endless. It’s essential to know what hazards to prepare for in order to keep your workers safe during the winter. Knowing what you’re up against is key to implementing an effective winter work plan.
Here are some tips for winter safety while on the job:
1. Reschedule shifts to accommodate frequent, short breaks.
Exposure is not your employees’ biggest hazard, but extended exposure is. The longer the body is exposed to harsh winter conditions, the more vulnerable it becomes. Reschedule to shorter shifts or allow frequent breaks so your employees can warm themselves up and hydrate.
2. Identify winter hazards in the outdoor work space.
It’s important to identify black ice risks, shovel areas used for walking, and equip entryways with winter-appropriate floor mats to prevent tracking moisture indoors.
Take the time to properly evaluate which areas of your business may be impacted by snow, moisture, and other winter conditions. You want to keep both your employees and your customers safe at all times.
3. Educate your workers on frostbite and hypothermia.
Exposure to the elements during the cold season will put workers at risk for hypothermia, frostbite and trench foot. It’s important that your workers learn when they are most at risk, how to protect themselves, how to identify symptoms, and what to do if they start exhibiting symptoms.
4. Equip vehicles with proper winter emergency kits.
Traveling during the winter months is tricky. Aside from making sure that your work vehicles are properly prepped for driving in snowy conditions, it’s important to also make sure that each vehicle is equipped with emergency supplies for winter.
Supplies should include blankets and mittens, communication devices, and food. From getting stranded due to snow-related road closures to experiencing engine troubles or crashes, it’s important to be prepared for anything while on the road.
5. Provide winter uniforms.
Change up your workers’ wardrobes for the season with uniforms that will keep them warm. Not only do you need insulated uniforms and high-traction footwear for winter, but you also need high-visibility apparel like vests and jackets.
Consult with a reliable uniform provider to get the winter-appropriate clothes you need. Make sure the uniforms are thick and warm but don’t inhibit your employees’ ability to work efficiently.
Service Uniform is Here to Help
When it comes to keeping your employees safe in the winter, there is nothing safer or more effective than preparing in advance. Service Uniform has the apparel you need to keep your employees safe and warm while on the job. Give us a call today at 303-936-4701, or visit us here!