Snow Removal Risks Realized This Winter:
- A worker removing snow from a rooftop who slipped and fell off the roof, landing on his head on construction materials stored below the roof, who later died of his injuries.
- A worker shoveling snow from a second story deck who fell through a shaft that was covered with a tarp, sustaining severe spinal and lower extremity injuries.
- A worker that fell from the roof of a commercial business as he was shoveling snow and was impaled by a piece of disassembled scaffolding that was upright in the course of his fall.
Steps To Reduce Snow Removal Risks:
- Train workers on fall hazards and the proper use of fall protection equipment.
- Provide and ensure that workers use fall protection gear if they are removing snow in areas that are not adequately guarded.
- Instruct workers who wear personal fall protection gear to put on their harnesses and buckle them snugly before mounting the roof to begin with.
- Have a plan in place for rescuing a fallen worker caught by your fall protection system that you have in place.
- Remove or clearly mark rooftop and landscaping features that could become trip hazards if partially or fully covered by snow or snow drifts.
- Workers on the ground should be protected from falling snow that could land on top of them resulting in suffocation. This can be done by designating an area where the snow is to be placed and clearly marking the area and making sure employee stay out of that area.