Winter on a construction site comes with a whole host of hazards. From slips and trips to frozen fingers and damaged equipment, cold temperatures require specific countermeasures to ensure a safe and productive site during the winter months. We must do our best to prevent illnesses, injuries, or fatalities by controlling these hazards in our workplaces impacted by winter weather.

PREVENTING SLIPS ON SNOW AND ICE:  clear snow and ice from walking surfaces, and spread deicer, as quickly as possible after a winter storm. When walking on snow or ice is unavoidable workers should wear footwear that has good traction and insulation and take short steps.

CLEARING SNOW FROM ROOFS: layers of ice can form as the temperature drops, making surfaces even more slippery. Snow covered rooftops can also hide hazards such as skylights that workers can fall through. Provide fall protection and training when working on roofs or elevated heights.

SHOVELING SNOW: Shoveling snow can be a strenuous activity, particularly because cold weather can be taxing on the body. There is a potential for exhaustion, dehydration, back injuries, or heart attacks. Warm-up before stating the activity, scoop small amounts of snow at a time and where possible, push the snow instead of lifting it. When shoveling, keep the back straight, lift with the legs and do not turn or twist the body.