Earlier this year, extreme weather conditions brought America to a record-breaking standstill (read about it here) and the year before, Great Britain’s trade also faced a freeze after heavy snowfall suddenly hit the island.
Winter 2014 has already been predicted to be a stormy one, with Britain facing it’s coldest yet and with CNN’s Indra Peterson already warning of the Arctic storms which have already begun in the US.
Businesses need to be prepared for winter; from road and transport standstills to health and safety within business premises, there’s a lot to think about.
1. Road Closures
Extreme weather can be extremely damaging to your business when members of staff are unable to get to work.
Health and safety should be every business’ first concern when it comes to their staff; if you expect your staff to travel in challenging weather conditions, it’s important to provide everyone with an updated health and safety talk so you can prepare everyone with the right safety knowledge.
Include in your health and safety talk, what appropriate footwear and equipment to have in your vehicle, and provide alternative travel routes for those who may face traffic or extreme snow.
2. Remote Working Options
It is also important to provide your employees with the option to work from home if their role allows them to.
In order to do this, ensure your Head of IT or IT Manager can provide the whole team with remote access on a laptop or home computer system.
To ensure that you can get a seamless process in place, make sure that there is a clear policy in place so employees know when they are entitled to work remotely and how they should go about it.
3. Power Supplies
The harsh winter weather can sometimes leave you without power, and this can become a big problem if your business can’t afford the interruptions.
Maintenance contracts from expert suppliers such as Critical Power is the quickest and most cost effective way of safeguarding your power supply over the testing winter months.
UPS systems can be a great back-up option when your power supply cuts out and will avoid any unnecessary interruption to your business services.
4. Health and Safety on Your Business Premises
If staff, visitors or customers are injured on your premises and you haven’t put in place the right health and safety measures, you could be liable.
Making sure your business premises is a safe place to work should be a priority in the winter. Ensure that the building is sufficiently heated, offer safe parking for staff and make sure entrance and exitways are safe to walk on.
Icy or wet surfaces need to be dealt with immediately and always use signs to help direct visitors.