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:
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 dayIf 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.