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Working outdoors in cold weather can be dangerous

On Behalf of | Nov 10, 2021 | Workers' Compensation |

As a resident of Minnesota, you know how cold it gets during the winter. If you work outdoors, it can be very dangerous. Suffering injuries as a result of such unsafe conditions could warrant having to file for workers’ compensation. You can use these tips to stay safer while working outdoors in cold weather.

How to safely work in the cold

Working outdoors in extremely cold temperatures can put you at risk of hypothermia. If that happens, you might have to file for workers’ compensation while you recover. However, you should take certain measures to stay warm and protect yourself if you must work outside in the cold. Always layer up and wear loose-fitting clothing. Avoid wearing anything too tight as it can restrict your blood circulation. At the same time, you should be as covered up as possible. When skin is exposed to frigid temperatures, it can lead to problems.

Wear waterproof boots that have thick enough, warm lining inside, a warm hat and gloves.

Stay with a partner coworker at all times while working to keep your eye out on one another in the event of a problem.

Eat foods that are warm and high in calories and hot beverages to stay as warm as possible while working outdoors.

How can you recognize the signs of frostbite or hypothermia?

Workers who are exposed to extremely cold weather while working outdoors run the risk of frostbite or hypothermia. If they suffer these injuries, they will have no choice but to file for workers’ compensation benefits. It’s important to know how to recognize the signs and symptoms of both conditions.

Frostbite is characterized by the freezing of your skin and its tissues. It can happen if you’re outside in freezing cold temperatures and uncovered parts of the body have been exposed to frigid, windy air or come into contact with frozen surfaces or ice and snow. If you have frostbite, you can experience reddish skin that might have blue or white patches, skin that has hardened, numbness and skin blistering after you have gotten warm.

Hypothermia is also very dangerous and occurs when your core body temperature falls under 95 degrees Fahrenheit. This is a serious condition that can be deadly and can cause an array of symptoms. Be wary of continuous shivering, breathing difficulties, red skin, confusion, fatigue, slurred speech and lack of coordination. You should get immediate medical attention if you believe you have hypothermia.