As frigid winter weather continues to pound some parts of the nation, safety concerns are important to consider. While seeking shelter in rain and shoveling snow may seem obvious, individuals must ensure they are doing everything possible to stay safe from extreme cold and winter accidents. As more snowfall blankets various regions, here are some guidelines for staying safe when it comes to shoveling snow.
First, unless you live in an extremely busy part of town, do not rush out to start moving snow. As counterintuitive as it seems, take the time to stretch your muscles – your hamstrings, back, and shoulders. These areas will be hard at work and in order to prevent unwanted injuries, treat shoveling as any other physical exercise.
Next, do not overdress. Wear a few layers that will enable you to stay warm initially, but resist multiple bulky sweaters, as you will start sweating after a few minutes. Wear loose-fitting layers that can be removed easily as you start warming up. Consider keeping a DeWALT kerosene heater powered on to minimize some of the shock to your body.
Before picking up your shovel, determine where you are going to pile up the snow. Move the first shovelful farther away from where you are standing, and then dump the rest of the snow closer to where you are. This means you will move the last batch a short distance away.
Clear around cars first by removing accumulation on all sides. Clean all windows until visibility is undeterred.
Keep hydrated and rest regularly to prevent burnout. If possible, seek help from family members, neighbors, or even hire someone to assist you with shoveling. The more hands, the quicker you can get back inside.
Once you are finished, stretch your muscles again to warm them down.