January 2017 – The Effects of Weather

By John Howell,

Effects of Weather
There is one element in the construction business that we have no control over—the weather. However, we can control how the weather affects the safety of a project.
Following is are some discussion points to use with your crew:


-Can blow dust in your eyes.
-Can blow materials and people off scaffolds, roofs or higher floors.
-Can blow down poorly braced formwork or newly framed walls.

Rain, Sleet, Ice and Snow:

-All four are wet, some are cold, and all can cause slips, trips and falls.
-Snow, sleet and ice can cover floor openings and cause more slips, trips and falls.
-Mud can result in pulled muscles from straining.
-All four can ruin construction materials.
-Water, ice and snow can affect trenches and other excavations. Closely inspect all excavations to determine how the weather is affecting them.
-Water, when it accumulates on a jobsite, increases the chances for electrocution.

Additional Discussion Notes:

-What other weather elements can adversely affect the jobsite?
-What is our policy when working in high areas to tie down equipment or people? DESCRIBE
-Who has the authority to shut down a job because of the danger of high winds?

Remember: When dealing with the weather and the effects of it on a construction project, use common sense and try to minimize the adverse effects.

NOTE: Always promote a discussion on any of the topics covered in the Toolbox Talks.
Should any question arise that you cannot answer, don’t hesitate to contact your Employer.

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