When it’s cold outside, you want to be aware and be prepared. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), some of the dangers that accompany cold weather are serious and dangerous, but there are some that you might not be able to spot as easily.
Workers who do their jobs outside are at some serious risks for weather-related work injuries and accidents, especially with the winter season. As the temps continue to drop, we’re asking all workers and employers to be ready, to be prepared and to be safe.
Our Boston workers’ compensation lawyers are reminding workers who complete their job outside to dress in warm clothes. You should always wear multiple layers of loose clothing. Layers not only provides you with better insulation, they also will help you to cool off if need be, by removing layers as you warm up. You should also always wear gloves to protect your hands and a hat to protect your head. You might think that your Northeast blood is conditioned to handle rigid winters, but did you know that you can suffer from weather-related injuries when the temps only drop to 60 degrees?
Potential Injuries from Cold Weather:
-Frostbite: Most of your body parts are prone to frostbite, including your nose, toes, fingers and even ears. This happens when parts of your body freeze. What can happen is that some of the tissue can be damaged — permanently. If you can’t save the tissue after one of these accidents that body part will need to be amputated. One of the best ways to prevent these kinds of injuries is to wear that protective clothing we were talking about. The colder it is outside, the faster frostbite can take hold. Be more cautious outside as the temps drop.
-Hypothermia: This is one of the most serious dangers of working outside in the cold. It’s also one of the toughest conditions to detect. This happens when your body temp drops below 95 degrees. When you start to suffer from this condition, you may start to feel confused and most times people don’t think there’s anything wrong until it’s too late. You’ll usually know when your pulse and your breathing slow, when you stop shivering, when your skin turns a shade of blue and your pupils may expand.
-Trench Foot: This is when your feet are too wet and too cold for too long. The wetness causes your feet to lose out on precious heat. The blood flow can slow and tissue can be irreversibly damaged.
-Chilblains: This can cause your skin to swell, blister, get too red, start itching and even break.
As the temps drop, we’re urging workers to start bundling up. Stay safe and stay warm out there to help to reduce your risks of any cold related work injuries.
If you or a loved one has been injured on the job, call the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman for a free and confidential consultation to discuss your workers’ compensation claim– 1-888-367-2900.
More Blog Entries:
Stopping Flu Outbreak at Work in Massachusetts, Massachusetts Workers Compensation Lawyers Blog, October 15, 2012
2011 Sees More Fatal Work Accidents in Massachusetts, Massachusetts Workers Compensation Lawyers Blog, October 4, 2012