Are your driveway and walkways are coated in a thick blanket of snow? It is time to get a shovel out for that dreaded chore. Take some time to read these safety snow shoveling tips to help avoid any potential injuries.
Shovelling snow can lead to a number of injuries and health risks for many people, from back injuries to heart attacks. The mix of cold temperatures and physical exertion increases the workload on the heart, which may increase the risk of a heart attack for some. Check out the following tips when you set out to shovel:
- Warm up. Warm your muscles before heading out to shovel by doing some light movements, such as bending side to side or walking in place.
- Push rather than lift. Pushing the snow with the shovel instead of lifting can help reduce the strain on your body. When lifting snow, bend your knees and use your legs when possible.
- Drink water-Stay hydrated.
- Select your shovel wisely. Ergonomically-designed shovels can help reduce the amount of bending you have to do.
- Lighten your load. Less is more! Consider using a lighter-weight plastic shovel instead of a metal one to help decrease the weight being lifted.
- Take breaks. Pace yourself. Set a timer. Consider taking a break after 20 to 30 minutes of shoveling, especially when the snow is wet.
- Take multiple trips. try shovelling periodically throughout the storm to avoid having to move large amounts of snow at once. Don’t worry the snow isn’t going anywhere..
- Try to shovel snow shortly after it falls, when it is lighter and fluffier. The longer snow stays on the ground, the wetter it can become. Wet snow is heavier and harder to move.
- Wear layers and remove them when needed to help maintain a comfortable body temperature.
Snow and Ice Removal Requirements
Snow and ice not only pose a potential risk to you but also to others. As a property owner, you are responsible for making a reasonable effort to keep public walking areas around your property clear of snow and ice. Pre-treating your walkways and other paved surfaces with an anti-icing product can help make snow and ice removal easier.
Be sure to check your local codes and ordinances regarding snow and ice removal requirements.