Do you know your responsibilities as an employer?
Know how to manage the temperature in your workplace to protect your workers?
You can take some practical steps to make your employees as comfortable as possible, when working in the cold:
- Provide adequate workplace heating, such as portable heaters, to ensure work areas are warm enough when they are occupied
- Design processes that minimise exposure to cold areas and cold products
- Reduce draughts while still keeping adequate ventilation
- Provide insulating floor coverings or special footwear when workers have to stand for long periods on cold floors
Provide appropriate protective clothing for cold environments
You can also change work systems:
The Health & Safety Executive advises that in severe situations, limit exposure by introducing systems such as flexible working patterns or job rotation and provide enough breaks to allow workers to get hot drinks or warm up in heated areas.
If your employees are working outdoors, cold weather can have a serious impact on worker’s health if the risks have not been properly managed.
The weather can also affect a worker’s ability to keep safe, for example when handling machinery.
There are simple actions you can take to protect people working outdoors:
- Ensure the personal protective equipment issued is appropriate
- Provide mobile facilities for warming up, and soup or hot drinks
- Introduce more frequent rest break
- Consider delaying the work until warmer times of the year without compromising on safety
- Make sure workers can recognise the early symptoms of cold stress, such as a cough or body aches
At Global, we run a full suite of Health and Safety Courses designed to help employers manage risk in all forms and stay onside of all legal requirements.