The winter elements bring a variety of challenges including scrapping off frozen windshields, frozen extremities and the famous winter falls. Falls are the leading cause of injury amongst Canadians, and the winter season presents an increased risk. Cold temperatures and snow bring icy surfaces that are incredibly challenging and dangerous to navigate.

1 – Prepare before the snow starts to fall

One of areas that poses the biggest risk for businesses are entrance ways and parking lots. Entrance ways are often an area of heat exchange, causing rapid ice build-up. Before the snow begins to fall and ice builds up it is important to check infrastructure surrounding entrances. Inspect handrails for damage and general wear and tear. These handrails help improve balance during the slippery winter season. Another key area to inspect is the lighting surround entranceways. Proper lighting allows individuals to spot potential dangers such as ice and snow buildup.

2 – Clean up wet floors

Having a winter floor cleaning plan is essential to reducing the risk of a fall. Snow will be tracked into your business and, once it melts, this snow will create a water hazard. It is important to consider purchasing extra floor mats for entrances to help absorb water and prevent snow from being tracked further than the entrance. Set more time aside for employees or cleaners to clean the floors during the winter months in order to remove water quickly and ensure that proper signage is in place to notify customers of wet floors.

3 – Keep pathways clear

Areas of high traffic, such as sidewalks, entrances and parking lots pose an increased risk for falls and slips during the winter months. It is important to have snow clearing plan for your business in order to clear these areas of snow and ice build-up in a timely manner.

For more information on how to reduce your liability for slip and fall accidents contact one of our risk management professionals.

The information provided in this blog is intended to be general in nature and should not be taken as advice or as a recommendation about insurance.

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