Common Injuries MO Workers Suffer During Winter Months

by James M. Hoffmann on Oct. 21, 2015

Employment Workers' Compensation Accident & Injury Accident & Injury  Personal Injury 

Summary: It is an employer’s responsibility to ensure workplace safety by taking the necessary steps to lower accident risks during winter months in Missouri.

Missouri workers are exposed to higher risks of on-the-job accidents during winter months due to snowfall, heavy rainfall, ice, and cold temperatures. It is an employer’s responsibility to ensure workplace safety by taking the necessary steps to lower accident risks during winter months. At the same time, workers need to take certain steps to protect themselves from some common injuries. Let’s take a look at some common winter injuries.

Cold Stress

Workers who need to work in an extremely cold environment are exposed to the risk of cold stress. This medical condition occurs when someone experiences heat loss from some parts of his body. Cold stress may lead to serious medical conditions, such as, frostbite or hypothermia. One may suffer cold stress even when the temperature is not extremely cold, says an article published in the Princeton University website.

A number of factors including temperature, humidity, wind speed, and exposure to chilled water are responsible for cold stress. Employers should make sure they provide the necessary training for their employees on how to protect themselves from cold stress. For instance, workers should consume high calorie foods and drink warm beverages at regular intervals throughout the day to avoid or minimize the risk of cold stress.

Slips and Falls

When workers walk through parking lots and pavements covered with snow, they track ice or snow with them. As they continue to walk the ice or snow melts, releasing water and thus making a hard surface slippery. This could be dangerous and may result in a serious slip and fall accident. Employers should make sure they remove any ice or snow from the parking lots and pavement, so as to avoid accidents due to slips and falls. It is also a good idea to use nonskid rugs or mats at the threshold of any building in an attempt to reduce the possibility of slips and falls inside the building.

Snow Removing Injuries

Workers who have a responsibly to remove snow with a shovel are exposed to higher risk of back injuries, soft tissue injuries, bone fractures, and lacerations. It is important to take short breaks while performing snow shoveling. A little warm up exercise before starting work can go a long way to help avoid serious injuries, says Laura Walter in the magazine EHS Today. It is also a good idea to use easily bendable shovels.

Employers have a responsibility to provide training to maintenance workers on how to handle a snowblower properly. Using hands to clean a jammed snowblower could be dangerous. Workers should unplug the jammed machine before trying to clear up the jams.

On the Job Injuries This Winter

If you suffer any winter injuries while on the job, you may be entitled to receive workers’ compensation benefits.

Our legal team has a strong history of helping injured workers get the medical attention and financial compensation that they need. Based in St. Louis, and handling workers compensation and personal injury cases throughout the State of Missouri, our law firm will ensure that your rights are protected. Please call (314) 361-4300 or toll free at (888) 872-6795. You can also complete our Online Case Evaluation Form. All communications are returned promptly.

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