The Slippery Season

The slippery season is here. We are in the time of year when ground conditions change due to leaves, walnuts, frost, rain, ice, and yes, snow.

As a result, ground conditions might be deceiving when walking: 

  • Walking and working surfaces can have slick spots even though they look clear. 
  • Snow or grassy terrain may hide dips, holes and other slip hazards.
  • Walnuts can roll under your feet and put you on your back.

So it's important that you wear work boots with adequate tread so you can have surer footing on the job site. Here's what else you can do to avoid falls and injuries this winter.

Scrape or allow adequate defrost time on windows before operating equipment. Allow the defroster to warm up and melt the ice, rather than just scraping, before driving over-the-road equipment. If you only scrape, the windows might ice over again resulting in poor visibility.

Remember to use the 3-points of contact when climbing up, down, and around on equipment. Do not give your full trust in anti-slip surfaces as they may not work in these conditions. 

Equipment may not work properly or as expected when cold. Make sure your aerial lift unit and its bucket control are in good working order. 

Chainsaws will act sluggish if not warmed up. Several of the chainsaws that we use have a Summer and Winter setting to improve performance. If you’re unsure of how your saw is set, please ask your supervisor.

Trimming certain trees that are frozen is a lot different than trimming them in summer. Be aware of these types and how they might react differently. 

Using proper signage is important so that adequate response time is given to drivers when road conditions are poor. Make sure all work zones are set up properly.  

We need to take time to do a thorough hazard assessment at all times, but there is an added dimension to it when winter comes. Remembering the basics is vital to safe performance!

Posted: 1/5/2018 2:22:28 PM by