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Practical steps to take before the onset of winter

Preventing Slips Trips and Falls During Winter

As temperatures begin to drop, pavements can quickly become hazardous due to snow and ice. Preventing slips trips and falls during winter at businesses are essential as they are common sources of injuries for visitors and employees alike. As an employer, it’s crucial to maintain the safety of your premises and keep your employees and visitors safe. Whether you take care of snow and ice removal yourself or use an outside vendor, it’s your responsibility to remove snow and ice in a reasonable amount of time to prevent third-party or employee injuries. Failure to do so may be considered negligence and put you at fault for any falls and injuries that occur on your site.

Tips for Winter Safety

Be proactive and put a winter safety plan in place before the onset of cold weather arrives. These practical steps should account for winter slip and fall hazards both outside and inside your business. It may include items related to removing snow, de-icing pavements and car parks, using mats and mops for slippery indoor areas, and creating a dedicated space to stow wet items (e.g., boots and coats). Other tips to consider as part of your business’s safety plan to enjoy an accident-free winter include:

  • Grit pavements and pathways when frost, ice or snow is forecast or when walkways are likely to be damp and temperatures are at or below freezing
  • Repair damage and perform maintenance to prevent potential winter hazards (e.g., fill in potholes, clean gutters and unblock drainpipes)
  • Make sure employees who help with snow and ice removal wear suitable clothes and proper footwear to help them avoid slips or falls. Encourage frequent breaks if the weather is extremely cold
  • Ensure all employees wear appropriate footwear with good traction to decrease the chances of slips and falls
  • Train employees on winter slip and fall hazards. Ensure that, when walking, employees are aware of any foreign substances on the floor, such as water from wet weather and other common hazards (e.g., sawdust, grease or debris)

Maintaining safety for your business is especially important in winter when hazardous conditions can easily cause falls and injuries.

Contact us today about how carefully selected insurance policies can help in reducing the aggravation associated with slips and trips and take the headache out of maintaining business continuity during the winter months.

Information provided by Zywave and contributed by Harrison Law Cert CII, head of Commercial & Private Clients, Cox Mahon Ltd.