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Working in the cold?

Working in the cold?

Winter weather presents hazards including slippery roads/surfaces, strong winds and environmental cold. Employers must prevent illnesses, injuries, or fatalities, by controlling these hazards in workplaces impacted by winter weather.


Safety Tips for Workers
1. Your employer should ensure that you know the symptoms of cold stress
2. Monitor your physical condition and that of your coworkers
3. Dress appropriately for the cold
4. Stay dry in the cold because moisture or dampness, e.g. from sweating, can increase the rate of heat loss from the body
5. Keep extra clothing (including underwear) handy in case you get wet and need to change
6. Drink warm sweetened fluids (no alcohol)
7. Use proper engineering controls, safe work practices, and personal protective equipment (PPE) provided by your employer


Preventing Slips on Snow and Ice
To prevent slips, trips, and falls, employers should clear snow and ice from walking surfaces, and spread deicer, as quickly as possible. When walking on snow or ice is unavoidable workers should be trained to:

1. Wear footwear that has good traction and insulation (e.g. insulated and water resistant boots or rubber over-shoes with good rubber treads)

2. Take short steps and walk at a slower pace to react quickly to changes in traction


Preventing Falls When Removing Snow from Rooftops and Other Elevated Surfaces
Employers should consider options to avoid working on roofs or elevated heights, plan ahead for safe snow removal and must:

1. Provide required fall protection and training when working on the roof or elevated heights
2. Ensure ladders are used safely (e.g. clearing snow and ice from surfaces)
3. Use extreme caution when working near power lines
4. Prevent harmful exposure to cold temperatures and physical exertion

Source: OSHA

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