This year’s winter season has ushered in record-breaking storms and cold conditions that ravaged much of the Midwest and Northeastern areas of the U.S. While many people have faced the effects of this crippling cold at their homes, for those who work outdoors, the cold conditions may be unavoidable – and they may put these workers at a significant risk of sustaining serious injuries.
Here and in an upcoming second part of this blog, we will go over some important tips that outdoor workers should keep in mind when working during the winter in order to protect themselves from the cold and reduce their risk of developing serious cold weather injuries.
Cold Weather Dangers and Injuries
Before we start discussing specific things that outdoor workers should do to protect themselves, it’s first important to look at what in particular about the cold weather is dangerous. According to the Director of Technical Support and Emergency Management for OSHA, the specific dangers associated with cold weather include:
- Cold air temperatures
- Movement of the air at high velocities
- Damp air
- Skin contact with cold surfaces and/or cold water.
This combination of factors can result in our bodies loosing too much heat and, as a result, being susceptible to hypothermia, the most common cold weather injury. Hypothermia is the dangerous drop in a body’s core temperature that triggers problems with muscular and cognitive functions; if left untreated, hypothermia can lead to irreversible – if not fatal – health complications.
In addition to hypothermia, other cold weather injuries may include trench foot, freezing of the eyes’ corneas and chilblains (essentially cold burns affecting areas of the skin that are left exposed to cold weather conditions).
Be sure the check out the upcoming Part 2 of this blog for some specific tips on what outdoor workers can do to reduce – if not eliminate – their risk of sustaining serious cold weather injuries this year (and during future winter seasons).
Colorado Workers’ Compensation Lawyers
If you have sustained a workplace injury and are considering (or in the process of) filing a workers’ compensation claim, you cannot rely upon your employer or insurance companies to look out for your best interests. In fact, both your employer and insurance companies will be more focused on their own bottom lines instead of your current and future wellbeing. This can make the system adversarial for injured workers and potentially even put them in situations in which their legitimate workers’ compensation claims are undercut or even flat-out denied.
In such cases, it’s essential that injured workers contact the Colorado workers’ compensation lawyers at the Law Office of Michael P. Dominick. Our legal professionals are experienced at going up against corporate lawyers and insurance companies, and we have a proven track record of success when it comes to securing our Clients the maximum possible compensation for their injuries and financial losses. For a thorough evaluation of your case, along with expert advice on the best manner in which to move forward, call us at (303) 447-2644.