Protecting yourself from the cold

Workers who are exposed to extreme cold or work in cold environments, like outdoors during winter, may be at risk of cold stress. Extremely cold or wet weather is a dangerous situation that can cause occupational illness and injuries such as hypothermia or frostbite. Here are some ways you can protect yourself from cold stress:

  • Monitor your physical condition. Watch for signs of cold stress such as shivering, loss of coordination, fatigue and numbness in hands or feet. If you notice those symptoms, get into a warm environment immediately to warm up.
  • Wear appropriate clothing. Wear several layers of loose clothing for insulation. Tight clothing reduces blood circulation to the extremities. Be aware that some clothing may restrict movement resulting in a hazardous.
  • Protect the ears, face, hands and feet in extremely cold or wet weather.
  • Boots should be waterproof and insulated.
  • Wear a hat to reduce the loss of body heat from your head.
  • Move into warm locations during breaks; limit the amount of time outside.
  • Keep handy an extra pair of socks, gloves, hats, jacket, blankets and maybe even a change of clothes in case yours get wet.
  • Avoid touching cold metal surfaces with bare hands.

For more information contact OEHS at 801-581-6590.