As an employer, you need to ensure that your employees are as safe as they can be in the event of adverse weather. The likelihood of snow is increased this year with temperatures as low as minus 16 forecast already! You need to be prepared and have appropriate controls in place. We are not suggesting that you can grit the roads or the footpaths, but you must look after any areas that your employees access as part of their regular work or form part of your premises. Examples are car parks, walkways and reception areas (which will become wet through foot traffic).
Our clients already have a policy identifying their responsibilities relating to slips and falls, and access to advice from the Health and Safety Advice Team. Do you have procedures in place to control the additional slipping hazards presented by the weather? In particular are you ready to ensure that all external walkways and steps on your premises will be regular cleared of snow and gritted to reduce ice.
The government’s snow code is a recognised approach to clearing snow and ice. We advise you to pay particular attention to building entrance areas to minimise the risks from wet floors. Have you advised your employees to wear footwear with a good tread when walking outside e.g. between the car park and the buildings. Have you made arrangements to control ice and snow risks in car parks by cordoning off areas which are deemed too treacherous to use, and are arrangements in place for routine gritting.