It’s been hard to miss the recent attack of freezing rain we’ve had in Minnesota. This is some of the most hazardous weather imaginable. Between the low temperatures and the icy roads and sidewalks, there isn’t much respite from the treacherous conditions.
While we all contend with the weather, the winter months can be especially hard for construction workers. While some work is seasonal, working in bad conditions cannot always be avoided. Because of this, it is important to practice safety measures at work sites.
Among the many safety concerns at winter work sites are:
- Ice on machinery: Any time rain falls in the winter, dropping temps can mean big problems. Ice can damage all kinds of equipment, causing it to malfunction or create safety concerns. It is important to de-ice equipment and ensure it is working properly.
- Slippery walkways: This is a concern for everyone during the winter, but it is easy to forget on a work site. Wearing proper work boots is important, but slippery surfaces are a danger even when you have the right equipment.
- Frostbite and dangerous temperatures: It is important to take breaks and warm up with the weather is cold. Don’t try to push it by staying outdoors for too long.
- Be aware: This is simple advice, but knowing weather forecasts and preparing accordingly is your best defense against dangerous work site conditions. Know if there are icy conditions in the forecast and prepare accordingly.
As Minnesotans, we know that ice may be the worst of all weather hazards. Knowing how to avoid the dangers of ice and cold can make all the difference, especially for construction workers.