Winter driving can be tricky and extremely dangerous, but there are ways to ensure your drivers are safe.
- Be sure to inspect vehicles before use to ensure that brakes, heating systems, and the engine are all working properly
- Each vehicle should be equipped with emergency kits including first aid kits, blankets, cones or warning beacons in case a driver gets stranded in a snowstorm
- Make sure that all of your drivers are experienced in driving in the snow and know how to handle risks such as icy roads
- You should also emphasize safe driving practices and make sure employees know that their safety is important to your business
AAA recommends the following winter driving tips:
- Avoid driving while you are fatigued. Getting the proper amount of rest before taking on winter weather tasks reduces driving risks
- Never warm up a vehicle in an enclosed area, such as a garage
- Make certain your times are properly inflated
- Never mix radial tires with other tire types
- Keep your gas tank at least half full to avoid gas line freeze-up
- If possible, avoid using your parking brake in cold, rainy, and snowy weather
- Do not use cruise control when driving on any slippery surface (wet, ice, sand)
- Always look and steer where you want to go
- Use your seat belt every time you get your vehicle
Removing Snow & Ice – Ice Melt / Snow Clearing Tools
Snow and ice removal is a necessary part of winter, to clear walkways, parking lots, and roads, however there are precautions that need to be taken. If you have an employee removing snow with a snow blower, make sure that the equipment is grounded and will not cause shocks or electrocution. It is also important that your employee is aware of the dangers of the snow blower, and never tries to clear a blockage with their hands or arms. Snow blowers can cause lacerations or amputation if used improperly, such as someone trying to clear a blockage while the machine is on.
Shoveling snow is a less technical operation than a snow blower, but make sure your workers are aware of their physical abilities and do not strain themselves. To avoid cold stress, workers should be sure to warm up, take small breaks, and only scoop small amounts of snow, pushing the snow, not lifting. FlexPAC offers a wide range of ergonomic solutions to help your employees clear sidewalks and entry areas more easily and more quickly. These tips may help you prevent employee injuries while working outside during cold winter months.
During Winter Storms – Ice & Snow
Businesses need to be prepared for extreme weather, including ice storms and snowstorms. If a storm is expected, preparatory steps need to be taken, such as having a backup generator and extra water supplies. If a storm is expected to be severe, it may be best to not have employees come into work. Storms such as these can cause power outages, which can be dangerous with cold temperatures since there is no way to heat the facility. Be sure that your carbon monoxide detectors are functional in case of a leak, which can happen during such a storm. If there is a storm, be sure that your employees are not working in dangerous outdoor conditions.
FlexPAC cares about safety and hope that this information helps you prepare your workplace, home, and winter drivers for the hazards of winter weather.
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