According to Accident Fund Insurance Company of America and United Heartland, during last year’s difficult winter, slips and falls on ice and snow accounted for nearly one-third of all workers’ compensation claims that resulted in lost time from work. This type of information reminds us here in upstate New York to be diligent about safety with the winter weather that has arrived!
Simple Tips to help your employees Avoid Injury when walking in the Winter weather:
Concentrate on the path ahead -- take your time, proceed slowly and walk deliberately.
Where possible, avoid slippery surfaces -- take a route around obvious slippery hazards, such as wet leaves, icy areas and snow banks.
Wear appropriate footwear -- wear shoes or boots with rough (waffled, ridged or heavily textured) soles to work and change into dress shoes if you must wear them. The inconvenience of changing shoes is insignificant compared to the inconvenience due to a serious fall related injury.
Use handrails wherever they are provided -- a secure handhold can prevent a fall if you should slip.
Exercise caution when getting in and out of vehicles – having a heightened awareness is important
Check to be sure entrance halls and stairs are clear of snow and slush -- tracked in snow and slush often cause slips and falls.
Beware of changes in walking surfaces, be prepared for black-ice formation after melting occurs -- many falls are caused when someone doesn't realize he/she is leaving a secure area for a slippery one.
Clean your shoes when you go inside -- caked snow and ice on shoe soles can be treacherous.
Avoid carrying items, especially heavy bulky items – keeping hands empty so arms are free to move for stabilization can help