Winter Safety Blitzes
Season's GreetingsLeader In Safety wishes you a happy and safe holiday season.
Weather that stops you coldIce and snow are a part of life in Canada but with the right information it is easy to work safely in cold environments. Knowledge and preparation are the keys to avoiding the potential hazards of frostnip, frostbite and hypothermia - serious conditions that require immediate medical attention.
Well into construction, Depending on geographic location, wind speed and type of work performed, retaining body heat on a jobsite can be challenging. In effort to keep major organs warm, blood is diverted away from less muscular areas such as the ears, face, fingers and toes, putting them at risk for exposure.
Often workers suffering from these conditions won’t recognize symptoms so it’s important that co-workers are aware of what to look for and how to respond. Frostnip, the early onset of frostbite, occurs when the surface skin freezes, becoming itchy and painful. As it progresses, the skin becomes numb, developing white, red, and yellow patches. Continued exposure leads to blisters and a permanent sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures. Frostbite occurs at a deeper level when the muscles, tendons, blood vessels, and nerves freeze. The skin becomes hard and temporarily unable to function. In severe cases, nerve damage and the loss of function can be permanent. If blisters become infected amputation may be necessary.
Symptoms of hypothermia include shivering, reduced coordination, mild confusion and a reduced heart rate. Left untreated, hypothermia can be fatal. Workers experiencing symptoms of these conditions should be brought into a warm area immediately to increase the body temperature gradually. Warm drinks and hats can help return the body to its core temperature. Alcohol and smoking should be avoided as both thin blood and prolong the body’s recovery.
For continuous work in sub-zero temperatures, warming shelters such as heated tents, cabins or resting rooms should be available. The work should be paced to avoid excessive sweating and temperature-based work rest schedules posted in a conspicuous location.
Keeping workers on their toesAnnually there are about 60,000 falls in Canadian workplaces, which account for about 15-20% of time loss injuries. With 60% of falls occurring at ground level, reducing these numbers can be achieved with regular housekeeping. Keeping walkways free of obstruction, covering cables, cleaning up spills and wet surfaces, evening out steps, stairs and thresholds and proper lighting will each contribute to a safer workplace. Although housekeeping will help, nothing benefits a company more than training. Knowing how to identify and minimize or eliminate potential problems will make workers more aware of their surroundings and more productive on the jobsite.
Proper propane use and storageTo enable a tank's relief valve to work effectively, propane must be used and stored in an upright position. Operators are to ensure the handling or storage of propane complies with the national Propane Storage and Handling Code and the respective provincial variations. Standards include no smoking in the vicinity, no truck-to-truck transfers, not overfilling the containers, and proper storage and securing of tanks and equipment. To be sure your company is compliant with the regulations in your province please give us a call.
Fall protection — did you know?If you are at risk for falling three meters (9’10”) or more at your workplace, you must wear appropriate fall protection equipment.
If equipment is required a fall protection program must be implemented at your workplace and include training workers, selecting, fitting, and inspecting the equipment.
Active fall protective equipment must be inspected daily.
Any equipment used in a fall should be replaced.
Fall arrest equipment should be evaluated and certified yearly.
Fall arrest equipment should be stored in a clean, dry area, free of fumes, sunlight or corrosive materials, and in such a way that it does not warp or distort the components.
Have Leader In Safety visit your jobsite to develop a program and determine the right type and fit of fall protection equipment for your workers.
Any project, any size, anywhere in the world, Leader In Safety is there to minimize risks, make it safe for employees and protect your company's bottom line.
>> Call today for a safer tomorrow: 1-866-939-7999
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