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It's cold outside, but you still have to earn a living

Working in the construction industry requires you to work in a variety of conditions. When the weather is bad enough, you may suspend operations, but the temperature doesn't often keep the work from moving forward.

If that's the case, then you risk suffering injuries due to the cold now that the weather has turned cold. As you know, the temperatures can get pretty cold here in New York. Keeping yourself warm and injury-free could take some preparation by you and your employer.

Construction site safety tips

The tips below may seem like common sense, but you would be surprised how many people fail to follow them. When that happens, they risk getting hurt. Keeping the following in mind could keep you from joining them:

  • Check the weather often and dress appropriately to prevent frostbite and hypothermia.
  • Before work begins for the day, the site should receive a thorough inspection. Any preparations required, such as the clearing of ice and snow, checking for downed power lines and more, should occur before anyone goes to work on the site.
  • Your employer should provide you with the proper protective equipment to keep you warm and safe.
  • Your employer should require hard hats, the appropriate gloves and boots, among other gear.
  • Tools and equipment can get pretty cold when not in use. Warming them up not only protects your hands but also helps ensure that the equipment works properly. Your employer should ensure caring for the equipment and tools in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions.
  • Any vehicle you use should contain an emergency kit containing items you may need in a cold weather-related emergency.

If your employer fails to provide you with the appropriate gear, ask for it. State and federal law give you the right to a safe work environment. This means that you should receive the appropriate equipment and training. Even when you and your employer do everything right, accidents still happen. You don't have to suffer from frostbite or hypothermia for winter to cause you pain.

You could slip and fall. A piece of equipment could fail at an inopportune time. A co-worker could make a costly mistake. The same construction site hazards remain. The winter weather simply adds another one. If you do suffer work-related injuries this winter, you may be able to seek workers' compensation benefits to help with your medical expenses, lost income and more.

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