Petrillo & Goldberg Law Blog

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Winter weather brings snow, ice and increase in work injuries

During the winter season, it is important to be mindful of safety during inclement weather. Cold temperatures, snow and ice can all be dangerous. Experts say that these conditions create an increase in work injuries every year.

Winter precipitation and icy surfaces caused over 42,480 people to miss at least one day of work due to injuries in 2014, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Of those reported injuries, 82 percent were caused by falls.

A study that was conducted by the Philadelphia Department of Public Health in 2017 and published by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), showed that city emergency rooms experienced significant increases in visits caused by falls during the winter months. These visits especially spiked on mornings following a snowfall. This information prompted the NIH to recommend businesses delay their openings and start times of close entirely during dangerous winter weather episodes. This will give extra time for snow and ice removal and therefore reduce work injuries.

Winter time work injuries can be expensive for employers and absolutely devastating for the people who are injured. Beside the pain and other potential physical disabilities, the inability to work can cause extreme financial harm. Experts suggest that both employers and employees use extra caution to prevent injuries.

One of the most important things to do is to keep up with removing snow and ice from parking lots and walkways. Another is to always stay aware of conditions and pay attention when walking. Give yourself extra time to walk places, and be sure to wear appropriate footwear such as boots with adequate tread.

With extra caution, employees and businesses can prevent winter time mishaps at work. Do not make the cold, icy weather even worse with a painful injury.