While these days are merrier with colorful decor lining the streets and holiday tunes, conditions on the job are more dangerous now than any time of the year.
This is especially true for places where the holidays usher in the harsh colds of winter. That is why employees working outdoors are at a big risk of slipping and falling on the job.
As with any unsafe condition on the job, snow and ice accumulation can be eliminated by following these simple yet effective safety guidelines:
- Wear shoes or boots with non-slip or non-skid soles.
- Monitor weather conditions by knowing the latest weather updates.
- Don’t allow snow or ice to accumulate in work areas. Clear them off immediately, especially if they run off on scaffolds and roofs.
- Always clear all walkways and entrance steps to buildings of ice and snow.
- Use anti-slip materials like sand or salt to make walkways and parking lots less slippery.
- Store shovels and gloves in areas known to all personnel.
- Always wear a hard hat when going outdoors. This should protect you from falling objects, as well as impacts caused by slips on slippery surfaces.
- Inspect overhead areas to make sure that snow and ice do not accumulate on them.
- Before using ladders, ensure that they are completely free of ice, snow and other materials that may cause slips or falls.
- To keep ladders and scaffolds well-maintained and protected from snow and ice, cover them before the end of the shift.
- Before using equipment and tools used for ice, inspect them well first. Ensure they are not covered with ice or have the potential to hurt you or others when dropped.
- Wear proper fall protection when clearing slippery materials off high places. For double protection, consider installing safety rails on such areas.
- Follow proper procedures in safe lifting and shoveling.
- Make sure areas that may have unseen ice or snow are well-lighted and equipped with directional markings.
For more information, contact ISRI Safety.