How Your Employer Should Protect You in Cold Temperatures
Posted: December 21, 2015
Posted in: Employer Negligence Workplace Injuries
As the days grow colder, working outside becomes increasingly hazardous. It is important that your employer takes extra precautions during these winter months to protect you at work. The law states that it is your employer’s responsibility to protect you from the dangers of cold and stormy weather, so make sure that if you are injured, you claim compensation.
Your employer has a ‘duty of care’ towards you, which involves a number of responsibilities with regards to winter weather. Alongside protective clothing, safe equipment and up-to-date training, there are a number of key factors that your employer should be taking into account while you work in hazardous weather.
- Timing: is it necessary that your work is carried out in cold or dangerous weather conditions? If not, it should be postponed until weather conditions improve.
- Facilities and breaks: if you are forced to work outside for long periods of time you should have access to a warm place, such as a porta cabin, in which you should be permitted to take frequent breaks. Hot drinks should also be available.
- Training: have you received adequate training to work with the machinery/equipment you are expected to use safely?
- Clothing: does your work clothing protect you from the cold weather and offers protection from the equipment you work with?
If you have been exposed to cold weather at work and suffered a form of illness, such as chilblains, immersion foot, frostnip/frostbite or hypothermia, this suggests that your employer is not meeting the above health and safety regulations.
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