Preventing winter slips and falls around your business

This winter, make sure your business plans include safety precautions related to winter weather. Snow and ice can make your parking lot, sidewalks and business entryways slippery and dangerous.

With the right measures in place, you can reduce the risk of injuries by preventing winter slips and falls on your property. Make winter slip, trip and falls prevention a priority with help from these tips.

Potential winter weather hazards that can impact your business

Winter weather can create hazardous conditions on your property. Here are some of the most common risks that can make your business unsafe for visitors, employees and customers:

  • Slippery business entryway—Snow or slush tracked inside can make your business entrance dangerously slick.
  • Icy sidewalks or parking lot—Black ice or sheets of ice are unsafe for pedestrians and drivers alike.
  • Falling icicles—Any icicles hanging above your business doorway have potential to fall and cause serious injury.
  • Snow sliding off the roof—If your building has a sloped roof near the entryway, just like icicles, snow can slide down and cause injury with little or no warning.
  • Improper shoveling techniques—Lifting and twisting while shoveling snow can lead to injury.

The best method for preventing slips, trips and falls in winter is to recognize the risks that are applicable for your business. From there, work with a risk control expert to create the best winter safety plan for your needs.

How to prevent slips and falls in the winter

As a business owner, your role in preventing winter slips and falls is very important. Consider these tips for your winter safety plan:

Tip #1 Make personal safety a top priority.

To protect visitors, customers and workers on your property, you must have adequate snow and ice removal. If you choose to complete commercial snow removal yourself, follow the correct OSHA requirements including providing training and the best snow removal equipment possible to your employees.

From salting walkways to shoveling heavy snow, your team needs to know what to do. For example, wearing warm socks and shoes with good traction is essential. You should also make sure you use rock salt, calcium chloride pellets or magnesium chloride pellets at the appropriate temperature. Lastly, mix and apply the de-icing mixture correctly and consider adding sand for additional traction.

Tip #2 Consider hiring a snow removal contractor.

To avoid the risk of injury to your team due to heavy snow, improper shoveling techniques or frigid temperatures, try commercial snow removal services for professional assistance. Snow clearing services can be very convenient for shoveling walkways, salting and plowing the parking lot on a scheduled or as-needed basis.

Tip #3 Follow “Slip, Trip and Fall” safety measures.

Make sure you utilize wet floor signs, slip-free floor mats and industrial floor dryers to keep your business entryway and other indoor areas safe for passing through. Proper business entrance lighting and sturdy handrails can also help with slips, trips and fall prevention in winter.

Tip #4 Mind the safety precautions that don’t work as planned.

Sometimes following safety measures can create different hazards for your business. For example, a floor dryer without taped down cords is a potential tripping hazard. The same goes for a floor mat with curled corners. If temperatures rise and fall throughout the day, sidewalks and parking lots might need additional salt to avoid slips and falls. Monitor your property to ensure all precautions are truly safe and effective.

How Grange’s Risk Control team can set your business up for success

Preventing winter slips and falls is simple with help from a professional risk control team. The risk control experts at Grange are here to help you navigate adequate winter slip, trip and falls prevention. Whether you need educational resources or training for OSHA compliance, we can help you meet your business needs and create an effective winter safety plan.

Talk to a Grange independent agent today to learn how our risk control team can assist you.

This article is for informational and suggestion purposes only. Implementing these suggestions does not guarantee coverage. If any policy coverage descriptions in this article conflict with the language in the policy, the language in the policy applies. For full details on Grange’s business insurance coverages and discounts, contact your local independent agent.

References
OSHA
CDC

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