Winter can be particularly difficult for construction workers exposed to the elements for lengthy periods. When setting up job sites in frigid or freezing weather, make sure you take extra steps to safeguard personnel. Look below to find tips for keeping construction workers safe during winter.
Keep Track of the Weather
Your priority during the winter months should be to check the weather before sending workers out. Recognize when temperatures and weather conditions can make working outside hazardous. If you can, try to only schedule workers around the afternoon, as it’s usually warmest at that time.
Clear Away Debris
You’ll need to review the conditions at the job site and clear out any debris you find. Before letting your employees work, you should do three things. Start by examining your building site for hazards, such as downed power wires and fallen trees. Then, remove any snow and ice from pathways, rooftops, scaffolding, and ladders before having workers navigate around them. Finally, put down salt or sand to give extra traction to workers along walkways.
Have a Heated Area for Breaks
Workers should be able to warm up in a heated trailer, tented area, or indoor space, limiting their exposure to the harsh conditions. Allow employees to take regular breaks to rest, consume hot beverages, and switch out of damp clothing. When using portable heaters, ensure that you adequately ventilate the space and use carbon monoxide detectors to check for toxic fumes.
Choose Portable Restroom Trailers Over Porta Potties
You should consider renting portable restroom trailers rather than porta-potties when you anticipate the weather will be freezing for an extended period. These restrooms can have heating inside, providing workers with a comfortable place to relieve themselves while they work. Having these types of bathrooms available can offer a pleasant escape from the cold and boost employee morale.
Make Sure Everyone Wears PPE
You should make sure that all personnel members wear appropriate protective gear to keep them safe from the elements. Everyone should have thick gloves to prevent frostbite and operate machines effectively. Your workers should also wear boots with strong traction to avoid slips and falls on ice and wet surfaces.
You can help implement the necessary protection at job sites by following these tips for keeping construction workers safe during the winter. Construction is already an inherently dangerous profession. Ensure that you do everything you can to mitigate the risks associated with the job.