From thin layers of ice to several feet of snow, there's no knowing what conditions winter may bring. Regardless, business owners should take proactive steps to ensure the safety of their employees, customers, and property so as to avoid various risks, from slips and falls to transportation challenges. Here are a few practical tips to navigate ice and snow safely:
Clear Walkways and Parking Areas
The first line of defense against winter hazards is to keep all walkways, entrances, and parking areas clear of ice and snow. Regularly have these areas shoveled with the addition of ice melt to prevent slips and falls. Addressing this concern promptly not only minimizes accidents but also demonstrates your commitment to safety.
Address Indoor Hazards
While outdoor safety is crucial, don't overlook potential indoor hazards. Snow and ice can be tracked indoors, creating slippery surfaces. Place absorbent mats near entrances, and promptly address any wet or slippery areas to prevent accidents inside your establishment.
Monitor Weather Conditions
Stay informed about upcoming weather conditions, especially when snow or freezing rain is expected. By monitoring forecasts, you can anticipate potential challenges and take proactive measures to mitigate risks. This includes scheduling extra maintenance staff, if necessary, and ensuring that your premises are well-prepared for the anticipated weather.
Depending on the nature of your business, you may even consider implementing remote work options during severe weather conditions. This not only prioritizes employee safety but also ensures that your business can continue to operate efficiently despite external challenges.
Implement a Communication Plan
Keep your employees and customers informed about any changes in business operations due to inclement weather. Use various communication channels, such as emails, social media, and signage, to provide timely updates on closures, delays, or altered business hours. Clarity and transparency in communication go a long way in fostering understanding.
Review Safety Measures With a Professional Resource
A professional resource, such as those within SynchronyHR's Risk Management team, can provide expert advice on worksite safety and the latest in risk-related compliance. Working with an expert to proactively keep your workplace safe from potential snow and ice-related risks helps best eliminate risks.
They can also advise on how to best educate your staff on safely navigating icy and snowy conditions, and can perform comprehensive examinations of your workspace(s) to identify potential sources of accidents or mishaps.
Stay ahead of winter challenges, and let safety be the guiding principle in the frosty months ahead. Need help putting in place a safety plan? Reach out today to learn more about our risk management services!
*This article is for informational purposes only and is not intended as legal counsel. For further information, please consult a risk management professional.