Working in the Cold - Not by TPenney

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									What does the Law Say


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          Why Be Concerned?
• The body needs to maintain a core
  temperature of 37C. This thermal balance
  must be maintained.




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What factors modify our response to
              cold?
• A cold environment challenges the worker in
  three ways: by air temperature, air movement
  (wind speed), and humidity (wetness). In
  order to work safely, these challenges have to
  be counterbalanced by proper insulation
  (layered protective clothing), by physical
  activity and by controlled exposure to cold
  (work/rest schedule).

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      Where is cold a problem?
• Outside work
• Food production
  – Chilled
  – Frozen
• Controlled environments
• Warehousing
• Winter driving

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                    Wind Chill/Frostbite Chart




As this chart indicates, if the actual temperature is -200 F and the wind is blowing 15
mph, the cold effect on your bard skin is -450 F. At this temperature, frostbite can
begin in as little as 10 minutes.bar Y Safety Consultants Alberta Canada
                                 P
            WEAR THE RIGHT CLOTHING
• Clothing should protect you from cold, wind, and precipitation and
  should also provide ventilation—be "breathable".
• Protect head, feet, hands, and face. Keep dry.
• Cover your head. Up to 40 percent of body heat can be lost when the
  head is exposed.
• Footgear should be insulated to protect against cold and dampness.
• Dress in layers, wearing warm, waterproof/resistant clothing.
     An outer layer to break the wind and allow some ventilation (like Gore-Tex® or nylon).
     A middle layer of wool or synthetic fabric (Qualofil or Pile) to absorb sweat and retain
      insulation in a damp environment. Down is a useful lightweight insulator; however, it is
      ineffective once it becomes wet.
     An inner layer of synthetic weave to allow ventilation. Synthetic materials such as
      supplex and coolmax are ideal because they keep you warm and dry.




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                      HOW TO PROTECT WORKERS
•   Recognize the environmental and workplace conditions that lead to potential cold-induced
    illnesses and injuries.
•   Learn the signs and symptoms of cold-induced illnesses/injuries and what to do to help the
    worker.
•   Train the workforce about cold-induced illnesses and injuries.
•   Select proper clothing for cold, wet and windy conditions. Layer clothing to adjust to
    changing temperatures. Wear a hat and gloves, in addition to underwear that will keep
    water away from the skin (polypropylene).
•   Take frequent short breaks in warm dry shelters to allow the body to warm up.
•   Perform work during the warmest part of the day.
•   Avoid exhaustion or fatigue because energy is needed to keep muscles warm.
•   Use the buddy system (work in pairs).
•   Drink warm, sweet beverages (sugar water or sports type drinks). Avoid drinks with caffeine
    (coffee, tea, or hot chocolate) or alcohol.
•   Eat warm, high-calorie foods like hot pasta dishes.

Workers Are at Increased Risk When…
•   They have predisposing health condition such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and
    hypertension.
•   They take certain medication (check with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacy and ask if any
    medicines you are taking affect you while working in cold environments.
•   They are in poor physical condition, have a poor diet, or are older.
                                                                             (from OSHA)

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Avoid slips and falls
• Walking on snow or ice is especially treacherous and wearing proper
  footwear is essential.
• A pair of well insulated boots with good rubber treads is a must for walking
  during or after a winter storm.
• Wear ice cleats on icy sidewalks or streets.
• When walking on an icy or snow-covered walkway, take short steps and
  walk at a slower pace so you can react quickly to a change in traction.
• When you must walk in the street, walk against the traffic and as close to
  the curb as you can.
• Be on the lookout for vehicles which may have lost traction and are slipping
  towards you. Be aware that approaching vehicles may not be able to stop
  at crosswalks or traffic signals.
• Walk carefully inside buildings when you have wet boots. Brush snow off or
  remove wet boots. Walk carefully on wet floors inside buildings.
• At night, wear bright clothing or reflective gear, as dark clothing will make
  it difficult for motorists to see you. During the daytime, wear sunglasses to
  help you see better and avoid hazards.

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                      Salt/anti-skid safety
When spreading salt/antiskid:
• Salt can be spread using a vehicle mounted spreader or a walk behind spreader.
• Perform general preventive maintenance on the spreader before using. Don’t
  operate the salt spreader attachment without proper training.
• Avoid lifting injuries- Use caution when loading the hopper to spreaders. Use
  proper lifting techniques. If using bags of salt, lift with knees (not back). Don’t lift
  bags above chest. Get help lifting bags if they weight more than 50 pounds. If
  possible, load salt into hoppers using mechanical equipment.
• Vehicle safety- Use appropriate warning lights on vehicles when salting roadways
  and beware of other vehicles and pedestrians.
• Walk behind spreaders- Walk carefully when spreading salt on slippery walks.
• Don’t use hands to unclog the hopper or the spreader plate on vehicle mounted
  spreaders.
• Wear appropriate clothing- winter coveralls, boots, gloves, etc.
• Use salt wisely- Try to minimize spreading salt beyond paved surfaces to minimize
  damage to grass and plants.




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                               FROST BITE
What Happens to the Body:
  Freezing in deep layers of skin and tissue. Pale waxy-white skin colors. Skin
  becomes hard and numb; usually affects the fingers, hands, toes, feet, ears and
  nose.
What Should be Done?
• Move the person to a warm dry area. Don’t leave the person alone.
• Remove any wet or tight clothing that may cut off the blood flow to the affected
  areas.
• DO NOT rub the affected area, because rubbing causes damage to the skin and
  tissue.
• Gently place the affected area in a warm (105oF) water bath and monitor the
  water temperature to slowly warm the tissue. Don’t pour warm water directly on
  the affected area because it will warm the tissue too fast causing tissue damage.
  Warming takes about 25-40 minutes.
• After the affected area has been warmed, it may become puffy and blister. The
  affected area may have a burning feeling or numbness. When normal feeling,
  movement and skin color have returned, the affected area should be dried and
  wrapped to keep it warm. NOTE: If there is a change the area may get cold again,
  do not warm the skin. If the skin is warmed and then becomes cold again, it will
  cause severe tissue damage.
• Seek medical attention as soon as possible.


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Frostbite is a medical condition that can happen to
anyone. In the most basic terms frostbite is when the skin
and/or the tissue under the skin freezes and causes cell
damage. This is caused by exposure to cold, either
through the air or through a chemical exposure, like to dry
ice (frozen CO2) or highly compressed gasses. Under
extreme conditions frostbite can occur in a second.

The elderly, young children, people with circulatory
disorders, and people from warmer climates have a higher
risk factor of getting frostbite. People who have had
previous cold injuries are also more at risk of getting
frostbite again in the same places.

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Frostbite comes in three levels of severity or degrees.

 •First degree, also called frost nip: Most people who live in very cold climates or do a
 lot of outdoor activity in the winter have had first degree frostbite (just as most people
 have had a first degree burn when they get sunburn). Frost nip presents itself as
 numbed skin that has turned white in color. The skin may feel stiff to the touch, but the
 tissue under is still warm and soft. There is very little chance of blistering, infection or
 permanent scarring as long as it is treated properly.




  •Second degree, superficial frostbite: Superficial frostbite is a serious medical
  condition that needs to be treated by a trained medical professional. The skin will be
  white or blue and will feel hard and frozen. The tissue underneath is still undamaged.
  Blistering is likely which is why medical treatment should be sought. Proper
  treatment is critical to prevent severe or permanent injuries.




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Example of first degree frostbite.




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Examples of second degree frostbite.




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•Third degree, deep frostbite: The skin is white, blotchy and/or blue. The tissue
underneath is hard and cold to the touch. This is a life threatening injury. Deep
frostbite needs to be treated by a trained medical professional. The tissue
underneath has been damaged, in severe cases amputation may be the final
recourse to prevent severe infection.




Blistering will happen.
Proper medical treatment in a medical facility with personnel trained to deal with
severe frostbite injuries is required to aid in the prevention of severe or permanent
injury.




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Examples of third degree frostbite.




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Unless your life absolutely depends on it, never walk on
frostbitten feet. If blisters form during rewarming, do not
break or drain them. The skin as it thaws out may turn
red, could tingle, burn or be very painful.

If you experience pain during the
rewarming process, get blisters, or have
tissue damage you should seek medical
attention immediately.

Never rewarm a frostbitten area on your own if you can get
conventional medical help and advice in a timely fashion.

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Facial third degree frostbite.




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                   Thermal Balance

                           Heat Retention
                                                           =
 Heat Production

                   +
  - Food Intake        - Decreased Superficial                     Cold Challenge
     - Activity              Blood Flow
                              - Clothing
    - Shivering



                   Hypothermia
Heat Production            Heat Retention
 - Food Intake
    - Activity     +   - Decreased Superficial
                             Blood Flow                    <       Cold Challenge

   - Shivering                - Clothing




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            HYPOTHERMIA- (Medical Emergency)
What Happens to the Body:
    Normal body temperature (98.6oF) drops to or below 95oF. Fatigue or drowsiness; uncontrolled shivering;
    cool bluish skin; slurred speech; clumsy movements; irritable, irrational or confused behavior.
What Should be Done? (land temperatures)
•   Call for emergency help (e.g. Ambulance or Call 911).
•   Move the person to a warm dry area. Don’t leave the person alone. Remove any wet clothing and replace
    with warm, dry clothing or wrap the person in blankets.
•   Have the person drink warm, sweet drinks (sugar water or sports type drinks) if they are alert. Avoid
    drinks with caffeine (coffee, tea, or hot chocolate) or alcohol.
•   Have the person move their arms and legs to create muscle heat. If they are unable to do this, place warm
    bottles or hot packs in the arm pits, groin, neck and head areas. DO NOT rub the persons body or place
    them in warm water bath. This may stop their heart.
•   affected area, because rubbing causes damage to the skin and tissue.
What Should be Done? (water temperatures)
•   Call for emergency help (e.g. Ambulance or Call 911). Body heat is lost up to 25 times faster in water.
•   DO NOT remove any clothing. Button, buckle, zip and tighten any collars, cuffs, shoes and hoods because
    the layer of trapped water closest to the body provides a layer of insulation that slows the loss of heat.
    Keep the head out of water and put on a hat or hood.
•   Get out of the water as quickly as possible or climb on anything floating. DO NOT attempt to swim unless
    a floating object or another person can be reached because swimming or other physical activity uses the
    body’s heat and reduces survival time by about 50%.
•   If getting out of the water is not possible, wait quietly and conserve body heat by folding arms across the
    chest, keeping thighs together, bending knees, and crossing ankles. If another person is in the water,
    huddle together with chests held closely.



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Stage         Core Temp      Signs & Symptoms

Mild          37.2 – 36.1c   Normal Shivering May Begin
Hypothermia
              36.1 – 35c     Cold sensation, goose bumps, unable to perform complex tasks
                             with hands, shivering can be mild to severe, hands numb

Moderate      35 – 33.9c     Shivering, intense, muscles in coordination becomes apparent,
Hypothermia                  movements slow and laboured, stumbling pace, mild confusion,
                             may appear alert. Use sobriety test, if unable to walk a 30 foot
                             straight line, the person is hypothermic
              33.9 – 32.2c   Violent shivering persists, difficulty speaking, sluggish thinking,
                             amnesia starts to appear, gross muscle movements sluggish, unable
                             to use hands, stumbles frequently, difficulty speaking, signs of
                             depression, withdrawn
Severe        32.2 – 30c     Shivering stops, exposed skin blue of puffy, muscle coordination
Hypothermia                  very poor, inability to walk, confusion, incoherent/irrational
                             behaviour, but may be able to maintain posture and appearance of
                             awareness
              30 – 27.8c     Muscle rigidity, semiconscious, stupor, loss of awareness of others,
                             pulse and respiration rate decrease, possible heart fibrillation

              27.8 – 25.6c   Unconscious, a heart beat and respiration erratic, a pulse may not
                             be palpable

              25.6 – 23.9    Pulmonary oedema, cardiac and respiratory failure, death. Death
                             may occur before this temperature is reached
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Prevention of frostbite is actually very simple and
  for the most part is based on common sense.
•Understand the prevailing weather conditions.
Remember not only air temperature but wind speed
effects how quickly frostbite can occur. Be prepared for
worse than what the weatherman calls for.
•Wear layers of clothing and protect exposed skin from
the elements. A number of very good man made
insulators are available on the market from a number of
manufacturers. Wool is the best natural insulator. Cotton
should be avoided if you are in conditions where you
might get wet.
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Physical Activity: The production of body heat by
physical activity (metabolic rate) is difficult to
measure. However, tables are available in
literature showing metabolic rates for a variety of
activities. Metabolic heat production is measured
in kilo calories (kcal) per hour. One kilocalorie is
the amount of heat needed to raise the
temperature of one kilogram of water by 1°C.
Protective clothing: Check section on "What
should I know about personal protective
equipment (PPE) for working in the cold?"
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  How is heat lost from the body?
• Radiation
     • Difference in Temp between body and surrounding
       environment. Greater the more skin is exposed
• Conduction
     • Heat loss through direct contact with cooler object.




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  How is heat lost from the body?
• Convection
     • Loss of heat to the surrounding air as the air moves
       across the surface of the skin. Heat loss depends upon
       air temperature and wind speed. Wind speed ceases to
       have an increased effect above 50mph




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  How is heat lost from the body?
• Evaporation
     • Heat loss due to the conversion of water from a liquid
       to a gas
        – Sweating – to remove excess heat
        – Insensible perspiration – to maintain humidity of 70% next to
          skin. Particularly in cold dry environment
        – Respiration – as heated air enters the lungs and is exhaled
          with an extremely high moisture content




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              Thermal Balance
• To survive in cold the body must balance the
  heat losses with the heat production of the
  body
• To look at this we must consider the Cold
  Challenges on the body. These are:
        – Temperature
        – Wind
        – Wetness




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            Personal Factors
• Size and shape of the body (surface to volume
  ratio)
• Layer of fat under the skin
• Decreased the blood flow through the skin
  and outer parts of body
• Insulation (layering and type of clothing)



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             Personal Factors
• Response in Men and Women
  – Core cools more slowly in women. However, they
    are not able to create as much metabolic heat
  – Extremities cool more quickly in women
  – As a result women are at a greater risk of cold
    injury




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              Personal Factors
• Predisposing conditions
  – Age – old and very young
  – Diseases of the blood circulatory system
  – Injuries resulting in blood loss or altered blood
    flow
  – Previous cold injury
  – Fatigue
  – Consumption of alcohol or nicotine

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             Personal Factors
• Acclimatisation
  – People do not acclimatise to cold very well
  – Frequently exposed body parts can develop some
    degree of tolerance to the cold




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      Effects of cold on the body
• Impairment of complex mental processes
• Manual tasks impaired due to loss of dexterity
• Blood redirected from extremities to keep
  core warm
• Reduced muscular strength




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        Effects of cold on the body
•   Stiffened joints
•   Reduced mental alertness
•   Corneas of eyes can freeze with high wind chill
•   Cold injuries




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            Risk Assessment
• Use the normal hierarchy
• Is cold process required?
• Can exposure to cold be prevented?
• Consider how people may be affected by the
  cold?
• Select suitable controls for residual risk
• First Aid Risk Assessment


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                     Controls
• Warm working station within cold area
• Exposure product to warm room for short
  period
• Pre-chill products
• Chilling stations on line
• Floor matting to raise feet off cold floors



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                     Controls
• Suitably heated rest rooms
• Work rest regimes to limit time spent in cold
  area
• PPE – free to user and suitable for conditions
• Training for First Aiders




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