Frost accumulating on window

Tips to Protect Workers from the Cold

DF SafetyEnvironmental Hazards, Health and Safety Tips

Staying safe during the cold, winter months can be slightly more challenging than during the warmer months. However, part of a thorough safety guide should include proper procedures during the winter. As an employer, it is your responsibility to keep your workers safe during extreme conditions. As an employee, it is your responsibility to follow those procedures. So, today, let’s discuss a few things you should keep in mind to protect workers from the cold.

Dress appropriately

When working in the cold, it is imperative that you are dressed appropriately. Choose to dress in layers and consider dry wicking materials to help with ventilation. Layering in several, light and loose layers will allow you the option to remove and adjust to the elements as needed.

Headwear that fits well, and gloves that allow you to do your work are necessary. Of course, don’t forget about your footwear! Warm socks, and quality boots will be your best friend when working long hours in the snow. Remember, when buildings aren’t an option, your wardrobe is your best line of defense against the cold.

Fuel your body

Working in the cooler temperatures requires different needs to fuel your body. Since your body is working overtime to keep you warm, you may find you need to eat more frequently throughout the day to sustain your energy.

If possible, rather than eating larger meals at once, snack consistently. Increasing carbohydrates is also a good idea. So, be sure to stock up on items such as bread, bagels, cheese, nuts, and meats to help keep you warm all day long.

Hydrate

Just as eating to fuel your body is important, so is hydration. Bring a larger water bottle, and make sure you are sipping regularly. According to the Mayo Clinic, The US National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine recommends about 3.7 liters of fluids for men, and about 2.7 liters of fluids for women. You may want to bump that up slightly when you are working to stay hydrated and help your body work as efficiently as possible. You can also include warm liquids, such as soups, which will keep your belly happy, as well as the rest of your body.

Find a friend

Working with a team, or another individual, is a good idea during the winter months. When working alone, you may be less likely to notice the impact the weather is having on you. If you work with another person, you can keep an eye on one another, and ensure you are following proper procedures and staying safe. If an emergency occurs, you know that someone will find help, and you will not be left stranded in the cold.

Take breaks

Breaks are necessary to working in extreme conditions. Be sure you are given breaks as needed to recharge and warm up. Employers should ensure breaks are taken, and employees should ensure that they are used.

If you are needing assistance in addressing proper procedures are in place for your business or organization, our team is happy to help.

We want to help ensure everyone stays safe, and warm, when working this winter.