In the northern states where snow is a way of life, construction workers are sometimes asked to work in pretty dangerous conditions. A blizzard is not the kind of weather you would expect to see cranes and backhoes working away, but deadlines and the fear of having to pay liquidated damages forces some companies to get to work when other companies are closed due to the weather.
Working in a blizzard creates limitations, but it is not impossible. As long as you follow some good work tips and remember your safety training, you should be able to put in a hard day’s work in conditions that would keep most people at home.
Create A Warming Area
According to Border States, your construction site should have a warming area for workers if you intend on working through a blizzard. It could be a work trailer or a building where the heat works, but you should have some area set aside where workers can go to warm themselves after battling the blizzard for an hour or so.
Be Conscious Of Workplace Maintenance
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) points out that workplace maintenance is always important, but it is especially important during inclement weather when conditions can become dangerous. The crew should be sure to put down salt in heavy foot traffic areas, and there should be a conscious effort to make sure that materials are not left piled in areas where they would not be expected.
Consider Doing The High Altitude Work Later
There is a lot you can get done during a blizzard, but there are some activities that should be postponed until the weather clears up. Working on tall structures, utilizing tall cranes and doing roofing work can become extremely dangerous because of the slippery conditions and the high winds. No matter how much work needs to be done, it is best to put the high altitude work off until the weather is more agreeable.
Monitor Your Equipment
Snow and ice can have detrimental effects on your equipment, and the possibility of an equipment breakdown is enhanced during a blizzard. When the weather is really bad, your crews should check on your equipment frequently and performing maintenance as needed. Do not allow the blizzard to damage your equipment and create a dangerous situation.
Respect The Weather
You can bundle up and put on goggles to work in a blizzard, but there is no equipment you can wear that will help you to handle the high winds and icy conditions a blizzard creates. If you work during a blizzard, then take everything slowly and respect the way in which the blizzard has completely changed your working conditions.
Construction work is already dangerous, but that danger can be amplified if you are forced to work during a blizzard. Sometimes a crew will get caught in a blizzard, and other times the job must go on no matter what the weather may be. When you go to PDH Contractors, you can browse courses by state to get the education you need to be able to handle the bad weather. Check out our state-by-state course listings and learn how to work in adverse conditions.