Safe on snow and ice

1. How we walk on the snow and ice, avoiding slipping and falling

  • Wear proper footwear. Heels, plain leather boots, sneakers or sports shoes are NOT the right choice! Prefer shoes with a flexible sole, ideally with a “tractor” bottom that can give you some stability in walking.
  • Walk slowly and carefully, especially when the road is icy or slippery or when it’s dark. It is important not to rush when walking in the snow.
  • If you have the option of walking on a more stable surface then do so. On a slippery road you prefer to walk on dirt or grass instead of pavement or asphalt.
  • If there is a damp surface, take caution as it can have been turned into ice.
  • In case of ice or snow around the house it is useful to throw salt, clear the ice and limit your movements to the absolutely necessary.

2. Driving in the snow: All you need to know

Avoid unnecessary movements. Especially during snow fall, only move when absolutely necessary.

Before starting:

  • We check the tire tread. Worn tires do not hold firm when riding in snow or ice.
  • We make sure we have anti-skid chains fitted to the drive wheels to enhance their traction on the road when it is covered with snow, ice or even mud. Make sure you know how to position the chains.
  • Check the radiator of the car and make sure it has enough antifreeze liquid.
  • We remove any snow from the roof of the car, otherwise there is a chance that a sudden braking will throw the snow on the windshield, blocking our visibility or even that of another driver.
  • We devote more time to cleaning windows and mirrors before we start. We use lukewarm water and antifreeze to remove ice from the outside of our car.
  • We make sure we have the following: high-visibility vest, anti-damp cloth, lens (manually charged not to consume car battery), antifreeze liquid, ice scraper, blankets, shovel, telephone charger, map and a mat we can use to lie under the car if it gets stuck in the snow.

When driving in the snow we should do the following:

  • If you are driving during snowfall, turn on your car’s fog lights for good visibility and for other drivers to see you.
  • Moving on a snowy road even if it has been cleared by snow sweeping vehicles or during snowfall, always reduce your speed. We keep the speed low and allow more time for stopping or turning.
  • Try to keep this low speed constant. Do not make abrupt movements, nor accelerate / slow down abruptly and always press the brake pedal gently and gradually.
  • We drive at low speeds. We shift down, if necessary, to second gear to reduce the slippage of our tires.
  • We need to leave more than usual distance between our own car and the one in front. The vehicle’s stopping distance on a wet road can be tripled, while in the snow it is multiplied depending on the speed and the vehicle.

And of course let’s not forget that:

  • Children up to the age of 12 must always be seated in a special child seat that is suitable for their weight and height.
  • We always wear seat belts (driver, front passenger and those in the back seats)
  • Alcohol and driving can’t be combined.
  • Talking on the mobile phone is only permitted using a hands-free or bluetooth device. It is good to know, however, that it can distract the driver.

3. Outside work in the cold and snow

  • Perform Occupational Risk Assessment before any outside work in the cold.
  • Have a contingency plan for work when there is cold, snow, frost and have workers trained for it.
  • Avoid having sole-workers (persons working alone) at very low temperatures so that workers can monitor and help each other in the event of hypothermia symptoms
  • Provide and ensure that protective clothing is used at temperatures equal to or below 4 ° C
  • Ensure that regular breaks are taken.
  • Excavations must be rechecked by the supervising engineer prior to resumption of work on snow or frost
  • All scaffolds must be inspected by the person responsible for their durability, stability and safety measures in the event of snow and frost, prior to resumption of work.
  • In the event of adverse weather conditions, operations obstructed by them must be interrupted. The operations are repeated after the safe working conditions are restored.

Sources:

 

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