Winter Is Coming - 5 Tips To Prepare For Wet And Cold Weather On Construction Sites
Follow these five tips on how to deal with the cold when on-site and look out for the people you manage:
1) Be Prepared For Bad Weather:
Winter weather is unpredictable in the UK, so check the weather forecast regularly so you can prepare for the day ahead. Keep an eye on the temperature, wind chill factor, and any warnings of snow, heavy rain, ice, or strong winds that could make working conditions dangerous on site. This will allow you to adjust your work schedule and prepare the necessary tools and materials to keep everyone safe and warm.
2) Wear The Appropriate Clothing And PPE:
The right Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and warm, waterproof winter clothing is essential when working in cold weather. Dressing in layers is key to regulating the body's temperature when working outdoors in cold weather. Start with a moisture-wicking base layer, followed by a fleece or insulated layer, and finish with a weather-resistant outer layer. A good pair of thermal gloves and a hat will also help trap heat within the body. And don’t forget the importance of good winter footwear – work boots should be sturdy and waterproof to keep your feet warm and dry throughout the day, and easy to clean to remove mud and grime at the end of the shift. Avoid cotton clothing as it can extract heat from the body as soon as it gets wet and eventually cause cold-related illnesses.
3) Stay Healthy:
The cold weather can result in a host of illnesses such as cold, flu, coughs, Covid, and even hypothermia. To stay healthy, make sure that all employees are aware of the symptoms of cold-related illnesses and look out for any signs of illness among the team. Encourage workers to take frequent breaks and have access to areas with heating facilities, where they can warm up and dry their clothes if necessary. Employees and contractors who are unwell should not attend site until they are better – working when sick increases the risk of accidents and could spread the illness among their teammates.
4) Keep Warm:
Providing warm and comfortable rest and recuperation facilities on the construction site is crucial during winter. Having mobile or fixed heating facilities is essential for workers to warm up during breaks, preventing the risk of cold-related illnesses. Additionally, having access to hot drinks and food can help keep workers feeling warm and motivated.
5) Don't Work If It's Too Cold:
Winter temperatures are generally mild in the UK. However, if the temperature falls below freezing, as it often does in January and February, or the windchill factor makes the temperature feel lower, it’s best to temporarily halt outdoor activities and reschedule work until the temperature rises. It may be necessary to stop some work on site for a few days or even longer to wait for the temperature to warm up and ensure everyone stays safe and healthy.
Working In Construction During Cold Weather
Working on a construction site in cold weather can be a challenge, but with proper preparation and precautions, construction sites can continue operations in most weathers while keeping workers safe and warm. Stay safe, stay warm, and keep on building! If you'd like to find out more then please get in touch today.
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