Stay S.A.F.E. – Remove Snow and Ice
The winter weather has definitely arrived (in the Midwest, at least) — and with the large amounts of snowfall and ice we’re experiencing, it’s critical to utilize a snow and ice removal program to keep your employees safe. While the weather conditions that increase the risk of outdoor slips and falls can’t be controlled, you can help reduce these accidents through careful attention to, and maintenance of, outside areas.
Sidewalks and parking lots are especially vulnerable to change in weather conditions. Some important things to remember:
- Ensure sidewalks and parking lots have been constructed to be slip resistant, even when wet, and have ample drainage to prevent rainwater and ice accumulation.
- Be sure snow is removed in a timely manner. This will greatly decrease the chances of falls occurring. A rule of thumb, which could be altered based on the amount of snowfall, is that snow removal should be performed every four hours for as long as snow falls, and one time after snow stops.
- Put sufficient lighting in place so employees and guests can clearly see where they’re going.
- Keep sidewalks clear and unobstructed at all times.
- Ensure sidewalks and parking lots are free of holes, drop-offs, cracks and other hazards. If any of these conditions occur, make repairs immediately.
- Use lighting and high-contrast signage when sidewalks and parking lots change levels.
- De-ice sidewalks and parking areas with salt or ice-melter when necessary to control buildup. Be extra mindful of areas where the sun will melt snow and ice during the day and re-freeze at night.
These are just a few highlights of what should go into a plan. We know that developing a program like this might seem like a daunting task, but Accident Fund is here to help. With tools like our Snow and Ice Removal Program Guidebook, you’ll be able to create a program for your organization that will help keep your employees S.A.F.E. this winter. And remember – in icy conditions, always walk like a penguin!
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