The construction industry doesn’t slow down just because the temperature has dropped. However, construction site managers and project overseers should be aware that construction sites can become more dangerous than usual during the winter season due to weather interference. Take these five steps to keep your construction site safer this winter season.
Keep an eye on the weather. A construction site full of workers stranded by a blizzard is dangerous because workers who are unexpectedly stranded may even attempt to drive home in unsafe weather conditions. Watch the weather throughout the day to ensure that workers have enough time to clean up the site and get home before a storm strikes.
Watch out for signs of hypothermia. Most construction takes place outside, which means that a winter construction site is a prime spot for a case of hypothermia. Workers who are consistently shivering, slurring their speech, showing a slow pulse, or whose skin is looking grey or blue should seek immediate medical attention.
Provide a heated break area. Provide a heated tent or trailer for workers to rest in, enjoy a warm beverage, and change out of wet clothing to lower the chance of illness. Remind workers to limit their caffeine and nicotine intake, as these stimulants tend to increase heart rate and make workers feel warmer than they actually are.
Warm up tools before usage. Warming up your equipment before usage can help protect both the tools themselves and the workers using them. Run your breakers and CAT hydraulic hammers at the lowest setting before usage and double check that any fluids you are using are rated for your site’s temperatures.
Don’t abandon safety gear. Workers will want to limit skin exposure when working outside during the winter but make sure safety gear and goggles are still worn at all times.
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