The weekend storm dumped 6-10 inches of snow on the Seattle area, knocked out power to more than 60,000 people, and prompted Gov. Jay Inslee to declare a state of emergency. After even more snow fell after the storm ended, the state’s biggest city officially counted its snowiest winter in history with 14.1 inches on the ground, passing the former record of 13.1 inches from February 1949.
All that, with even more snow on the way across the state.
But even when the weather gets nasty, work must go on for many of us in the industry. Here’s how to make sure your employees avoid the worst of the elements and stay safe on the job:
Keep flexible scheduling. Seriously adverse winter weather will often shut down a jobsite by necessity, but don’t be afraid to roll with the forecasts and plan work accordingly to fit travel and project needs. Once everyone is on site, allow ample time to gear up for the temperatures and break often to warm up.
Check in with your people. Cold stress and worse can set in with little warning, so be on the lookout for early signs and nip them in the bud. The telltale symptoms of hypothermia include shivering and shaking that grows uncontrollable, worsening coordination, drowsiness, confusion and slurred speech; frostbite looks like pale skin that’s cold, numb and hard to the touch and may also appear in the form of blisters and swelling.
Clear the way. Much like your driveway at home, the jobsite can become rife with slip and fall hazards throughout the winter season. Take the usual precautions to shovel and de-ice walkways. Pay special attention to high-risk areas exposed to the weather, as they’ll become even more precarious with a slick layer of ice.
Jobsite safety is just one of the many training areas offered through your membership with AGC of Washington. Get in touch with us or check our website to learn more about our member services. No matter the season, AGC is on your side and on your team.