Winter Weather: Be Proactive and Alert
Winter weather is hazardous for many people – drivers, emergency workers, law enforcement, airport baggage handlers, deicing equipment operators, construction workers and many others.
With outdoor work, activities and travel, some simple recommendations can prevent cold-related injuries. It only takes a few minutes’ exposure to extremely cold temperatures to develop a frost bite injury.
Our most important recommendation is to dress properly for the weather:
- Inner and outer layers to keep you dry
- Hat or hood to cover ears and a face mask, if necessary
- Waterproof, insulated gloves and boots
Drinking the right liquids is also important. OSHA recommends drinking warm, sweetened fluids and avoiding alcohol and caffeine, as these cause the body to lose heat.
Be proactive and alert. Take frequent breaks in a warm area. Work in pairs so either worker can spot the danger signs, and notify a supervisor or get medical help immediately if a worker has signs or symptoms of hypothermia or another cold-related illness or injury.