Making Work Safe with Donaghy Safety Training – Don’t Be Left Out In The Cold

first_imgContinuing their very popular column, Making Work Safe, leading safety experts Donaghy Safety Training, take us through a very topical issue which should ensure that nobody is left out in the ‘cold’ in the workplace! During cold weather, work must go on, bills still have to be paid and those deadlines don’t go on hold because of a little inclement weather.Even though it may be tempting to “tough it out” or “work through it,” prolonged exposure to cold, wet, and windy conditions can be dangerous, even at temperatures above freezing. At an increased risk are employees who take certain medications, are in poor physical health, or suffer from illnesses such as diabetes, high blood pressure, or cardiovascular disease. When working in cold weather, precautions should be taken to minimize the risk of injuries.Clothing should be your first consideration when working in cold weather.Clothing should be selected to suit the temperature, weather conditions (e.g., wind speed, rain), and the level and duration of the activity. The following are clothing recommendations for working outdoors during cold and inclement winter weather:• Wear several layers of clothing. Trapped air between layers forms a protective insulation.• Wear warm gloves, and keep an extra pair handy in case the first pair becomes wet. In many workplaces, particularly construction it is a requirement to wear PPE including gloves, try going a size bigger with these and wearing a thermal glove underneath.• Wear a hat that provides protection for head, ears, and even face in extreme conditions. 40% of a person’s body heat can be lost when the head is left exposed. Where head protection is worn, ensure you adjust the webbing of your hard hat to accommodate your new thermal headwear.• Use the hoods of jackets or sweatshirts for added protection for your neck, head, face, and ears.• Wear footwear appropriate for weather and work conditions. Footwear should not fit too tightly, which could reduce blood flow to the feet and increase the risk of a cold injury. Steal toed boots are notorious for losing heat, invest in a pair of lined boots for the winter, keep them dry and in good serviceable condition and they will last you a few years. • Wear synthetic, wool, or silk clothing next to the skin to wick away moisture. Cotton clothing can lose insulating properties when it becomes damp or wet.Additional safety precautions while working in cold weather should include:• Avoid getting wet. Body heat is lost 24 times faster when clothing is wet.• Take short, frequent breaks in areas sheltered from the elements, to allow the body to warm up. • Avoid exhaustion and fatigue because energy is needed to keep muscles warm.• Consume warm, high-calorie food to maintain energy reserves, such as pasta or hot cereal.• Drink warm, sweet beverages to reduce the risk of dehydration, and avoid alcohol and caffeine.• Work in pairs (buddy system), especially in remote areas, to keep an eye on each other and watch for signs of cold stress.• Shield work areas from the elements to reduce wind chill and reduce the chances of getting wet (windbreak, tent, or roof).• Ensure you have a supply of fresh, dry clothing in your works vehicle, leave wet and soiled clothing to dry out in the drying room of your site/workplace where you canIf you want to learn more about safety in the workplace, visit www.donaghysafetytraining.ieMaking Work Safe with Donaghy Safety Training – Don’t Be Left Out In The Cold was last modified: November 13th, 2017 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:Donaghy Safety Trainingdonegallast_img read more