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How to stay safe when removing snow

On Behalf of | Jan 2, 2018 | Workplace Injuries

Workers in New Jersey and elsewhere may face safety hazards while removing snow. Those who have to remove snow from rooftops or other elevated areas may be at risk for falling. It is critical to remember that the weight of anyone clearing the snow has to be accounted for in addition to the weight of the snow on the roof. OSHA recommends that workers use rakes or clear snow from the ground using draglines.

If the snow is heavy and wet, it may be best to remove it in smaller increments. The use of a smaller shovel may also help to prevent workers from getting hurt or dying while engaging in snow removal. Workers should also take regular breaks and lift with their legs instead of with their backs. Finally, workers who are removing snow should stay hydrated and refrain from drinking caffeine or alcohol.

Following these tips may prevent individuals from experiencing frostbite or from overexerting themselves. When machines are used to clear snow, they should be inspected beforehand and kept away from power lines or other sources of electricity. This may reduce the odds that a person is electrocuted or is injured because of machine malfunctions. Precautions should also be taken to reduce the odds that workers are hit by vehicles or trapped under falling snow.

Anyone who is the victim of a workplace accident may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. They may help to pay medical expenses as well as provide financial resources while a worker is recovering. Benefits may be offered on a temporary basis if an individual expects to recover and return to work. However, they may be offered on a permanent basis for those who are unable to return to work because of their injuries.