• Cold Conditions and Work Injury
  • November 24, 2017
  • If recent temperatures are any indication, the Philadelphia area could be in for a very cold winter. When you work outdoors, it can be especially hard to stay warm and function effectively. That is why construction employees need to be prepared for the safety issues associated with extremely cold weather.
    According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, there are certain risk factors associated with working outside during cold weather, leading to “cold stress.” This condition arises when the body loses heat and is unable to warm itself. Dangers of cold stress include:
    Dehydration
    Numbness
    Shivering
    Hypothermia
    Immersion Foot
    Frostbite
    Slip and falls
    With careful planning, cold-weather-related injuries can be prevented. There are many steps that employees should take to protect themselves and their workers against the cold. These steps include:
    Learning to recognize symptoms of cold stress
    Monitoring weather forecasts and communicating potential risks
    Maintaining emergency kits with water bottles, non-perishable foods, warm gloves, hats, a blanket, a flashlight, extra winter gear, and an ice scraper
    Protecting the job site from cold-related damage, such as freezing pipes
    Maintaining easy access to first-aid kits and emergency numbers
    Salting sidewalks and other surfaces to prevent slips and falls
    Scheduling warm-up breaks to rest, eat, and hydrate
    Dressing in extra-warm layers of clothing
    Covering metal tools and handles with insulated materials
    Wearing appropriate gloves and footwear
    Scheduling work hours during the warmest times of the day
    If you have been injured on the job, contact a Philadelphia Workers’ Compensation lawyer at the Law Offices of Jeffery S. Gross. To schedule your free consultation, complete our online form or call 267-589-0090. Our office is conveniently located in Philadelphia.