6 Useful Tips for Keeping Warm This Winter on Site

Posted by Brett McCutcheon on Nov 27, 2021 8:15:00 AM
Brett McCutcheon

6useful tips for keeping warm

Construction work is never completely free of the potential for accidents and unsafe situations. While you and your crew are working outdoors during the winter months, it can become especially prone to happening. However, these effective cold-weather safety tips can reduce the chance of accidents and costly time delays. These tips cover the most essential steps you can take to keep your team safe and your project on budget.

1. Organizing the Site for Winter Safety

The most fundamental step towards keeping your construction site safe during winter work is with a sound layout. You obviously can't control terrain or how other contractors handle their part of the work, but wherever possible, keep your own work area ordered enough so that everyone knows where to leave their tools, where the first aid station is and how dangerous materials can be safely stored. Organizing like this will also minimize unsafe running around and increase workflow.

Trash should also be regularly removed so that it doesn't trip workers up and all cables should be neatly laid out for maximum visibility even in snow.

2. Warm Clothing and Safe Equipment

Insist that your work crew dress warmly for winter work. This means:

  • Thermal fabrics (preferably wool or artificial thermal materials)
  • Multiple layers of clothing
  • Protective gloves and even face protection if it’s particularly brisk.
  • Good, strong, steel-toed work boots that are new enough not to have leaks are a must.

Additionally, as far as possible, try to equip your crew with the best in professional power tools that work well and are robust enough to handle the rigors of winter workloads along with frost and wetness.

3. An Insulated Break Area and Frequent Rest

No matter how tough your construction crew members are, they deserve a place to rest in subzero temperatures. A comfortable break area is essential and if it all possible, should be heated too. If you can quickly fasten together an insulated break shed with a heater, this is where your workers can warm up and reduce their chances of frostbite and/or hypothermia.

Break times should also involve plenty of warm liquids and hot food. If possible, offer onsite appliances for heating everything up and keeping it warm. Frequent breaks should be a rule during winter months. It's a small price to pay for avoiding much more disruptive accidents.

4. First Aid for Rapid Injury Response

Persistent cold makes a person's muscles contract more tightly and rapidly lose elasticity due to heat dissipation. This means less strength, slower reaction times and reduced overall mobility. The result can cause basic tasks to become difficult. In large part, this is how winter construction work causes a disproportionate number of workplace injuries.

Therefore, make sure you have a first aid plan and a station accessibly marked off for rapid access by any of your workers. Having your crew react quickly and without difficulties to a sudden injury can make the difference between life and death.

5. Winter Safety Education

Educate your crew on the symptoms of frostbite and hypothermia. Make sure that they understand how dangerous certain otherwise normal workplace habits can be during deep cold and ask that they watch each other for signs of trouble or misguided activity. For example, even the simple act of holding onto or touching bare metal surfaces without gloves in deep winter, can cause severe skin injuries.

6. The Right Tools for the Right Weather

Equipping your crew with professional, high-performance power tools that can keep running in low temperatures, will let them work quicker resulting in less cold exposure. FASCO®’s (a member of BECK) F20 and F30 lineup of staplers and bradders are just a couple examples of tools built for winter effectiveness. The top-loading design makes it easy to refill as you work in any conditions and their insulated foam grips let you handle them securely and comfortably, even in the deep cold. These lightweight guns offer plenty of kinetic power for a range of staple sizes and no-mar tips protect the surface integrity of soft wood.

Winter construction doesn't have to be nearly as dangerous or time-consuming as it has been in the past. You can create a difference with a combination of the right tools and the right essential protective steps for yourself and your crew.

View the F20/F30 Models

Topics: building, Staples, pneumatic tools, Staplers, bradders


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