'In early 2017, SIMA conducted a survey related to injuries in the industry, and the results reinforced the need for us to continue to provide safety training and information for those fighting winter weather each season.'
Since 2013, the SIMA Education Committee has made safety a primary focus for educating the industry. SIMA’s Snow Safety Week, an annual week-long event with articles, videos, webinars and more, has played a significant role in bringing that safety focus to the forefront. The amount of snow management-specific safety information we have generated in these past five years has been beneficial - but there’s always room for more! This year, we proudly celebrate the fifth anniversary of Snow Safety Week, October 23-27, 2017.
Why safety training?
In early 2017, SIMA conducted a survey related to injuries in the industry, and the results reinforced the need for us to continue to provide safety training and information for those fighting winter weather each season. Let’s recap a few key stats:
- 23% of companies had one or more injuries in the past season resulting in lost work time.
- Over 50% of injuries/lost time occurred due to an employee slipping and falling.
- 58% of respondents indicated that sleep deprivation was the root cause of most injuries to their workforce, followed by 35% relating it to employee attitudes toward safety.
- Webinars focusing on employee slip and falls and workplace conflict.
- New articles covering a variety of topics on personal health and safety.
- 10-minute Facebook Live events to talk safety with Safety Week sponsors.
Learn more about Snow Safety Week at www.sima.org/SnowSafetyWeek. Special thanks to our 2017 Snow Safety Week sponsors: BOSS Snowplow, FCA Commercial and Caterpillar Inc. for their commitment to industry safety.
Commit to safety
SIMA is constantly looking at safety resources that we can build for the benefit of the snow and ice management industry. We urge you to commit to safety as well. Here are five ways to help you elevate safety within your company:
- Access SIMA’s members-only Snow Safety Boot Camp course at www.sima.org/resources for basic training on nutrition, sleep management, stress management and walking safely on snow and ice.
- Challenge your snow teams to actively participate in Snow Safety Week by viewing the webinars and by reading and sharing the tips provided in the articles and Facebook Live events.
- Review your snow-specific safety training and seek to align it with the entire season vs. simply conducting preseason training.
- Commit to safety at the top and consider instituting annual safety awards or a recognition program for your team.
- Audit your managers/crew leaders and identify safety champions vs. those who might cut corners. Attitudes toward safety internally can be the difference between a safe winter season and a catastrophic injury.