Help winter workers avoid cold stress Email
Written by Colorado Green NOW   
Wednesday, December 09, 2020 02:00 AM

Colorado Green Now

If your landscape company continues to perform services over the winter months like hardscape installation and snow removal, be sure you have a safety plan in place to prevent cold stress. OSHA’s cold stress guide is not an official safety standard, but it provides information and advice to help workers avoid conditions such as hypothermia and frostbite.

The conditions that lead to cold stress vary according to the climate of the worksite. The individual worker’s health also affects how susceptible they may be to cold stress. OSHA recommends:

Employers should train workers. Training should include:

  • How to recognize the environmental and workplace conditions that can lead to cold stress.
  • The symptoms of cold stress, how to prevent cold stress, and what to do to help those who are affected.
  • How to select proper clothing for cold, wet, and windy conditions.

Employers should:

  • Monitor workers’ physical condition.
  • Schedule frequent short breaks in warm dry areas, to allow the body to warm up.
  • Schedule work during the warmest part of the day
  • Use the buddy system (work in pairs).
  • Provide warm, sweet beverages. Avoid drinks with alcohol.
  • Provide engineering controls such as radiant heaters.

OSHA also provides a helpful table with a work/warm-up schedule for a four-hour work shift with recommendations on how to schedule breaks and when to stop working for safety’s sake.

Read more in this issue of Colorado Green NOW:
Survey provides insight into consumer gardening interests
Debt: from four-letter word to growth strategy
Listen your way to personal and business growth
Landscape professional input needed to establish 2021 legislative priorities