The cold temperatures and icy conditions that are often a part of Canadian winters can cause hazards at the workplace. These hazards include:

  • Winter Driving—Seasonal weather (snow, ice, sleet, and freezing rain) poses a significant challenge to safety on the road. Drivers who are unprepared for the conditions increase their risk of a collision.
  • Cold Stress—Exposure to the cold can lead to frostbite and hypothermia.
  • Hypothermia—The body can no longer maintain its core temperature, causing persistent shivering, confusion, and poor coordination.
  • Frostbite—Parts of the body are exposed to extremely cold temperatures or come into contact with cold objects, causing the tissues to freeze. Slips and falls—Ice, snow, slush, wet surfaces, and mud (during a thaw) can cause slips and falls. A slip on the ground can cost you weeks off work. A slip at height can cost you your life.
  • Carbon monoxide (CO)—Fuel-fired heaters can release CO gas. CO is a clear, colourless gas that you can’t smell or taste. It interferes with your body’s ability to use oxygen. Even in small doses, it can kill you.

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