Winter weather can bring a variety of challenges, from slippery roads to frozen pipes. One of the most common winter activities is snow shoveling. While shoveling snow can be a great way to get a workout and clear your driveway, it’s important to exercise caution and safety while doing so. Here are a few snow shoveling/snow clearing safety tips to help you stay safe this winter.
1. Dress appropriately. Wear layered clothing, waterproof boots, gloves, hats, scarves, and goggles to protect yourself from the cold.
2. Warm up before you begin. Take a few minutes to stretch and warm up your muscles by doing some light exercises prior to shoveling or clearing snow.
3. Don’t overexert yourself. Shoveling and clearing snow can be hard work, so take regular breaks and switch between activities to stay warm and avoid tiring yourself out. Take breaks and drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated.
4. Use the right tools. Make sure you use the right tools for the job. Invest in a good snow shovel or snow blower and make sure it is in good working order. Choose a flashlight and shovel that is suited to your size and strength. If you’re using a snowblower, check the battery and fuel levels to ensure it will run without issue and avoid using snowblowers on wet snow because wet snow can clog the blower’s chute and cause damage to the machine.
5. Clear the area. Before you start shoveling or clearing snow, make sure the area is clear of debris, rocks, pets, and children. Look for wires, poles, curbs, and any other obstacles before pushing the snow to make sure no one gets hurt.
6. Clear driveways and walkways. Clear as much of the area as you can so that you are visible to oncoming vehicles and pedestrians.
7. Shovel safely. Always keep a good posture when shoveling. Don’t twist your body and lift with your legs instead of your back because bending your back can put strain on your muscles.
8. Avoid slip-and-fall hazards. Clear the snow from sidewalks, walkways, and any other areas people may walk. Be aware of any ice hazards or slick surfaces.
9. Monitor the weather. Check the weather forecast before and throughout your snow shoveling or snow clearing process. Pay attention to warnings of heavy precipitation or extreme cold.
10. Don’t take risks. Despite the temptation, don’t try to move larger chunks of snow than what your body can handle. Be aware of snow that is wet and heavy, and use a bigger and sturdier shovel.
By following these safety tips, you can make sure that your snow shoveling and snow clearing is done safely and efficiently. Have a great winter season!