Snow Shoveling Safety Tips:
· Do some stretching
and warm-ups before starting.
· Get a long-handled
shovel designed for pushing the snow whenever possible, rather than lifting it. This will help you stand more upright and
use your stronger leg muscles instead of stressing your back.
· If you have
to lift snow, use a short-handle shovel to keep the weight closer to your body. This will allow you to use your leg muscles
and keep your back as straight as possible. If you only have a long handled shovel, adjust your grip accordingly.
· Get as close
to the snow you’re shoveling as possible-the further away you have to reach the greater the risk to your back.
· Take smaller
amounts on the shovel, even if that makes the job longer.
· Do not twist
and turn with the shovel loaded with snow. Move your feet and turn your whole body in the direction you are tossing the snow.
· Watch out
for protruding objects on the surface you are shoveling, an employee injured his elbow recently when he hit a hidden protruding
nail while clearing snow from a platform.
your stance periodically by putting a different foot forward or switching hands.
· Keep your
chest up to help stay in a more upright position.
· Take breaks
and drink plenty of water. When you are shoveling for a few hours, you will get dehydrated without realizing it.
· If it is
a major digging out, consider breaking the job down into sections. Taking long breaks between sections.
· If you have
any chest pains, STOP immediately. Your body is telling you to stop. After shoveling, treat any soreness or injuries (except
for frostbite) by applying ice for 15 minutes, then off for one hour. Do not take a hot bath. This will increase the area
of soreness and swelling.