Toolbox Talks Electrical Topics

Looking for toolbox talks electrical topics? You’ve come to the right place! We have included 3 below that you will find useful during your next toolbox talk.

Toolbox Talk: Be Safe with Extension Cords

extension cord

Extension cords are used all the time at work and at home. It’s probably because they are so useful! While they may make life easier, but they can cause fires or shocks if they aren’t used properly, or if worn out.

So, what types of extension cords are out there?

They usually come in either two or three wire types. When using two-wire extension cords, make sure it’s only powering 1-2 small appliances. If you need to power outdoor appliances or power tools, then make use of a three-wire cord. Why is this? Well, the third wire on this cord is a ground, so it should never be connected into an ungrounded electrical outlet.

You should always treat extension cords with care. Check them regularly for damage or wear. Don’t pull cords hard in an attempt to disconnect it from the electrical source. One thing that can be very tempting is to hide extension cords under rugs or furniture – or even though doorways, walls or ceilings. This act can be very dangerous, as damaged cords can cause a fire or shock!

You should never use extensions cords as a form of permanent wiring. Fastening them to a building or structure with staples is never a good idea. You should also avoid plugging two cords together in an attempt to make a longer one. When too many extension cords are used to power on appliances, it could reduce the operating voltage and efficiency of things that are plugged into it. This can lead to motor damage.

In short, extension cords are very convenient, and we use them for a lot of our daily activities. Even though they seem harmless, you still need to take proper care of them to prevent fire or shock hazards. Also, be sure you position extension cords, so they don’t become a tripping hazard. And always inspect them regularly to make sure they are free of any damage.  

Toolbox Talks Electrical Safety

Electrical safety toolbox talk

Fires are very destructive and can take years to rebuild afterwards. One of the main causes of fires is related to electrical sources. One way to mitigate this hazard is to have proper electrical installations and equipment.

Before making any choices about electrical equipment and their wiring, take note of the area in which they will operate. For example, an electrical device might be safe for installation in an area containing combustible dust, but it may not be safe in areas containing flammable gases or vapours.

Take hazardous areas into consideration when it comes to electrical installations including:

  • Are flammable liquids present?
  • Are those flammable liquids being transferred from one container to another?
  • Is spray painting happening nearby?
  • Are flammable solvents being used?
  • Are there dangerous levels of dust in the area?

The most important thing to remember when it comes to electrical safety. Make sure all electrical hazards are mitigated and controlled.

A Toolbox Talk on Preventing Electrical Shock

Toolbox Talks Electrical

You need to be mindful about the potential for shocks whether you’re at work or even at home. Our bodies have a low resistance to electricity, which unfortunately makes for a great conductor (like metals). The human body doesn’t respond well when the electricity passes through it. Electricity can cause thermal burns, heart trouble, severe muscle contractions, and sometimes death.

Usually, electrical injuries happen when electrical current flows between the hands and feet. This can happen when someone touches an energized line. The energy looks for the shortest path to the ground, and unfortunately, this path is your body. Afterwards, a person’s lungs and heart are usually damaged. One way you can protect yourself is to put an insulator between the energy and the point of contact. Things like rubber, porcelain, and dry wood offer great resistance from electricity, and can protect you from electrical shock.

So, how can you avoid electrical shock? Here are some helpful tips!

  • Make sure electric tools are properly grounded or double insulated. Check for any damage on the outer case and be sure it’s clearly labeled as “double insulated” by the manufacturer.
  • Be sure the grounding system is complete. If there is any doubt about the grounding, test it. Remember, ground testers aren’t expensive.
  • Use heavy duty grounded extension cords with two layers of insulation and reinforcement between the layers. They are less susceptible to damage than household type cords. Remember, most flat cords are not heavy duty.
  • Don’t mix water and electricity. This might be a no-brainer, but you should keep cords, tools and working/walking surfaces dry. Also, keep your hands and feet dry as well. Why? Well, the electrical resistance of wet skin is at least 100 times less than dry skin so this greatly increases the likelihood of severe shock from contact with a live circuit.
  • Never work on or around a live electrical circuit. Always lock out the power so that only you have control over energizing the machine or equipment. Don’t take chances.

We have more toolbox talks electrical topics and many others on our site. Click here to see our mixed topic packages.

5 Toolbox Talks for Construction

Toolbox Talks for Construction

Need toolbox talks for construction? Check out the message below which reminds workers about the importance of clear communication at work.

#1 – A Toolbox for Construction About Good Communication

Did you know that by engaging in the simple act of clear communication, you can prevent injury to both yourself and your co-workers? It’s true! Throughout our day, we can communicate in many ways – verbally, with hand signals, via telephone or even with the use of signage. So how does one engage in good communication practices? Well the most important thing you can do is be concise. Refrain from the use of riddles or nicknames or even acronyms that everyone may not be aware of. Have the person you are speaking to paraphrase the conversation when you’re finishing up your discussion. This will minimize the chance for a miscommunication to occur. Don’t forget that communication is key to building a strong safety culture!

#2 – Safe Material Handling at Work – A Great Toolbox Talk for Construction

Did you know that material handling is one of the most common injuries at the workplace? They can lead to strains, sprains and also contusions. The main causes of these injuries usually stems from improper lifting techniques, failing to use equipment and engaging in unsafe work practices.

Here are some tips to prevent injuries while engaged in manual material handling tasks:

  • Inspect the load before lifting. Are there any jagged or sharp edges? Use gloves when necessary.
  • Size up the load. Is it manageable to handle yourself, or will it take two people to lift safely?
  • Inspect the path of travel. Pay particular attention for tripping hazards and make sure there is adequate room to maneuver safely.
  • Clean items before lifting. Keep your hands free of anything that will prevent a firm grasp such as oil, grease, wet or ragged gloves.
  • Physically lift it properly. Bend with your knees, keeping your back straight. Get a firm grasp on the load, and make sure to have a solid footing before beginning. Once you lift the load, keep it close to your body.
  • Beware of pinch points. Keep your fingers away from edges where pinches may occur. This is especially important when carrying materials through doors or when setting a load down.
  • Practice safe finger positioning. When handling things like pipe and lumber, keep your hands and fingers away from the edges. Crushing injuries can result without these good manual material-handling techniques.
  • Think ahead. Every lift should be planned beforehand, as this can prevent material handling injuries. Proper lifting uses your leg muscles more than your back, so get a good footing. You don’t want to fall while carrying a load or end up under a load, as this can compound any injury that occurs.

Material handling is made more difficult when water, snow, mud or grease has accumulated. Keep work areas and floors clean, dry and free of debris.

#3 – Safe Drum Handling

This is an excellent Toolbox Talk for construction. As you know, improper handling of drums and barrels can result in severe injuries. These include back sprains, crushed toes and fingers, or even exposure to hazardous chemicals if the contents are leaking. Thankfully, proper work practices can minimize your risk of injury, so please consider the following tips.

• Prior to handling the drum, read the label. Look for symbols, words or other marks which indicate if its contents are hazardous, corrosive, toxic or flammable. If the drum isn’t labeled, consider the contents hazardous until they are positively identified.

Check the drum to see if it is leaking. Before cleaning up any spill, make sure the substance has been identified. Make sure that you’ve been trained in the hazards of the chemical, and have the correct materials for cleaning it up. Find and review the appropriate MSDS.

• Replace missing elements. Before moving the drum or barrel, replace missing bungs and/or lids and secure as necessary.

• Estimate the weight. Depending upon the contents of the drum, you should estimate its weight. Determine whether you can move it yourself or if you need assistance. Remember, a 55-gallon drum can weigh 400-800 pounds!

• If you decide to move the drum yourself, use a forklift if one is available. You can also consider a hand truck or a drum cart that is designed specifically for drum handling.

• If the drum can be rolled, stand in front of it and place both hands on the far side of the chime. Pull the drum forward until it balances on the bottom chime. You can roll the drum on its chime, being careful to keep your hands from crossing over one another. You can also lower the drum to the ground for rolling by shifting your hands to the bottom side of the chime (not where they will be crushed). Slowly lower the drum to the floor. Keep your back straight and bend at your knees. Then roll the drum with both hands. Don’t use your feet or grasp the ends.

• Protect your hands, feet, back and face during while handling a drum. Safety shoes are required when moving heavy drums. Gloves, eye protection, aprons, and other personal protective equipment may be needed, depending upon the contents of the drum. Please check with your Supervisor if you are unsure.

• Most importantly, use material handling equipment whenever possible, and get help when you need it!

#4 – Hazardous Materials

This is a great reminder for in your next toolbox talk for construction projects. Every year, thousands of new chemical compounds are produced. A lot of these products improve our lives, but many are harmful to our health and to the environment. The issue occurs when these substances become so common to us that we can find ourselves in a dangerous situation while using them casually.

The definition of hazardous material is: “A substance (gas, liquid or solid) capable of creating harm to people, the environment, and property.”

Examples are:

  • solvents
  • paints
  • gasoline
  • adhesives
  • lubricants

They include materials like Drano and even nuclear fuel. Many people have suffered serious health problems from exposure to hazardous materials. Take the time required to thoroughly understand the potential harm in these materials, and how to use them and dispose of them properly.

Reminders about hazardous materials:
• Manufacturers must provide a Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) with all hazardous products they sell.
• Materials in transport must be properly labeled, e.g., flammable, explosive, radioactive, etc.
• The MSDS must be available to any worker who works with or transports such products.
• The MSDS explains the physical and health effects of hazardous substances and how to avoid harm.
• The MSDS explains procedures for spills, leaks and disposal.
• Hazardous materials or by-products such as gases cannot always be seen or smelled.
• Internal or external harm from exposure does not always appear immediately.
• Every worker who works with or near large quantities of hazardous materials must know the steps to take and who to contact in the event of a spill.

When working with chemicals, please be safe. Yes, they can make your life and work easier, but they can be very harmful if not treated with care.

#5 – Safe use of Liquid Petroleum Gas

If you need a toolbox talk for construction projects, then you’ll love this one. Liquid Petroleum Gas or Propane is commonly used as a fuel for forklifts, man-lifts, certain types of heaters and lighting. When pressurized and/or chilled, the propane gas contained within a cylinder turns into a liquid state. A liquefied gas is much more “concentrated” than gas, which is simply compressed.

If a gas is liquefied, the pressure can increase rapidly when the gas is heated. Heating can come about from purely natural sources (i.e. the sun). Under normal circumstances, a relief valve on the cylinder will release the gas in a controlled manner to prevent the cylinder from exploding due to over-pressurization. However, if the cylinder and valve are not properly maintained and/or the pressure build-up is very rapid, such as when the cylinder may be directly exposed to fire, a cylinder failure and subsequent explosion can occur.

There are several ways to prevent this.

  • Always make sure the cylinder and relief valves are not damaged in any way. Damaged cylinders should never be used.
  • Store cylinders out of the direct sun and away from other heat sources.
  • A properly filled cylinder will not be full of liquid. Some space should remain to accommodate gas that may be driven off due to heating. In this case, the gas will be retained in the cylinder rather than being released into the atmosphere where it could create a hazard.

Other important safety measures to remember are as follows:

LPG cylinders must be in good condition. Often cylinders have been damaged by impact or have corroded over a period of time. Inspect your equipment often and keep it in good condition. Just because a LPG dealer will fill your cylinder, this is no guarantee it is safe. If in doubt ask for the equipment to be inspected by a qualified technician.

LPG is heavier than air. If it leaks it will tend to spread along the ground. You may even see a visible fog of gas. Be aware that ignitable mixtures can extend beyond the visible area. LPG cylinders should be stored in well-vented areas and away from sources of ignition, especially those at floor level. Never store LPG below ground level or in a confined space.

LPG leak detection is serious! If you smell or notice leaking LPG, immediately extinguish all flames and cigarettes in the area. Do not use electrical switches or even telephones. Evacuate the area and report an emergency to 911 or other emergency number. Phone from a safe distance away.

When LPG is released it is extremely cold. If you physically contact escaping gas, or anything around it, you could suffer frostbite. Whenever refilling or connecting an LPG cylinder, wear gloves to protect yourself from direct contact with the gas and cold surfaces.

• Burned LPG creates deadly carbon monoxide emissions. Never use LPG appliances indoors without approved ventilation. Be cautious of LPG powered lifts while working in areas like warehouses, freezers, container vans or any other environment with limited ventilation. LPG is a popular and safe form of energy-as long as it is used and stored with care.

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7 Construction Toolbox Talks to Keep You Safe

If you’re in need of construction toolbox talks, we have you covered! Below, you will find 6 construction toolbox talks free of charge. Each one is general in nature, however, feel free to edit the contents to make it more relevant to the work taking place at your organization. And with that, let’s get started!

#1 – Construction Toolbox Talk Topics [LADDER SAFETY]

ladder safety at work

If you’re working in cramped conditions, finding space to properly store tools and materials can be problematic to say the least. With that in mind, a mess at the base of ladders can also be problematic for people using them. So, what should you do? Well, making the proper storage of tools and equipment a priority is absolutely crucial to the well-being of everyone working on the job site. If you’re feeling tempted to leave materials in any available space (including around the base of ladders), please know that this can be dangerous for others. You may think it’s harmless, but it can be extremely dangerous to both you and your co-workers. Imagine trying to descend a ladder, you get to the bottom expecting to put your foot on solid ground – only you stumble on debris (eeks!) This is a recipe for injury! So please, keep ladder landing areas free and clear of any items that could create a tripping hazard. Congested ladder landing areas can be very dangerous for those using the ladder, as people can easily slip, trip or fall while ascending or descending. Any tools, materials and equipment you may be using should be properly stored to ensure they do not create hazardous conditions. 

#2 – Toolbox Talk Safety in Construction [HAZARD MITIGATION & ELIMINATION]

Hazard mitigation and elimination on the job

You may not have given it a lot of thought, but have you ever asked yourself how you should respond to hazardous conditions? Think about what you have done in the past when you noticed a hazard in your work area. Did you wait until someone else corrected the unsafe situation? Were you proactive and took immediate action to control the hazard yourself? It may take a little extra time to correct unsafe situations, but when you stumble upon a hazard, you should own it and do whatever you can to safe out the area. You may not realize it, but these dangerous situations can be resolved very quickly just by correcting unsafe conditions yourself. So, as much as you may feel tempted to walk by a dangerous situation and do nothing, take a moment and really think about the consequences of turning a blind eye. All hazards in your work area should be remedied immediately to prevent injury to you and your co-workers. Even if you didn’t create the hazardous area, once you see it, then the responsibility lays on you to correct it. If you have need assistance with controlling hazards in an area speak to your Supervisor. 

#3 – Complacency on the job [A MUST READ]

Complacency on the Job Construction

“I’ve been doing it this way for years!” Sound familiar? If you or one of your co-workers stand firm in this approach to your work, you might just be asking for trouble. First of all, it’s quite normal to feel comfortable completing your work – especially if you have been doing the same tasks for years. However, this sense of comfort can put you at risk of becoming complacent. What does “complacent” mean? Well, essentially it means that you become so confident in your ability to perform your work (with no issues) that you sometimes stop focusing on safety. At times, you may be tempted to take dangerous shortcuts just to get the task completed, simply because you feel like you can get away with it. It may even be a shortcut you’ve taken many times in the past – without incident – which makes it even more tempting. Please remember that shortcuts can be dangerous – if they aren’t part of the safe work plan or procedures, then you should never take them. You may also find yourself going into “autopilot” mode, which means your mind zones out on the task, and you just perform your work ‘as usual’ without taking note of any type of change that could bring about hazardous conditions. Sometimes we don’t even realize how complacent we are until we have a near miss or close call. Please stay focused on your task and follow all safe work practices and procedures to avoid a possible injury. 

#4 – Toolbox Talk Construction Site [FATIGUE]

Toolbox Talk Fatigue

Ever have that feeling where your eyelids seem like lead, and evening opening them for a few seconds is extremely difficult? If you’re feeling like this, you are more than likely impacted by fatigue. It’s easy to find yourself exhausted – especially with everything that life throws at us every day. Work, children, friendships, social engagements – phew, that’s a lot to keep up with! It seems like a full-time job just trying to balance everything. No wonder we’re tired! While fatigue may seem quite normal, you need to realize that it can actually bring about dangerous conditions for you while on the job. How? Well, the most common side effect of fatigue is making poor decisions at work that put you in danger. When you’re short on energy, you might be more tempted to take the easiest route – even if that means the difference between safe and unsafe decisions. If you’re engaging in unsafe behaviours just to get the job done, you’re asking for trouble. Being tired can also contribute to you making mistakes, simply because you’re not focused on the task at hand. So please, don’t put yourself at risk of injury just because you’re tired. Make sure you’re well rested before coming to work and get at least 8 hours of sleep before your shift. If you have difficulty sleeping, you can try using the ear plugs, soft music or even a fan to block out any noise.

#5 – Keep Your Work Area Clean!

Construction Safety Toolbox Talks Housekeeping

Ok, let’s be honest for a second. Does anyone really enjoy cleaning? I mean, we do it because we have to (after all, we aren’t pigs – snort, snort). However, it’s not like anyone is waking up in the morning and saying, “I can’t wait to clean my work area today!” Right? Well, for those of you who are having those thoughts first thing in the morning, then maybe you should be promoted to housekeeping lead! For the rest of us “slobs”, let’s take a few minutes to talk about why a clean work area is so important to your safety. A messy work area is a sea of hazards on a job site. For example, tools left in aisle-ways can create tripping hazards or wet spots on the floor can create slip hazards. Take the time to clean up any mess you find on the job. Put all trash and debris in proper containers, dispose of hazardous materials in approved marked containers and keep your work area free of unnecessary tools, equipment, materials, and waste of any kind. When you practice good housekeeping regularly, you can mitigate/eliminate any danger to you and your co-workers in the area. If you need assistance with housekeeping challenges, contact your Supervisor. 

#6 – Construction Ergonomics Toolbox Talk

Construction Ergonomics Toolbox Talk

Feeling pain as a result of repetitive motion? You’re not alone. In fact, many people develop a condition known as carpal tunnel, which can be very painful. How does it happen? Usually it’s due to a nerve being regularly disturbed (ouch!) What are the symptoms of carpal tunnel? Well, they include pain, weakness, or numbness in the hand and wrist. Obviously, this doesn’t sound pleasant but there are things you can do to prevent it from happening. One thing is to recognize tasks that require repetitive bending and flexing of the fingers and wrists. This can happen when you’re using hand tools, like screwdrivers or paint brushes. Try distributing your grip across your muscle (from the base of the thumb to your pinkie finger), rather than just using the center of the palm. Also, gloves will lessen the shock when using vibrating tools such as chippers and hammers. You should also rest your hands periodically and minimize repetitive movement when possible.  

#7 – Construction Fire Safety Toolbox Talk

Construction Fire Safety

Fire! Fire! What do we do? When a fire breaks out, your stress levels can go through the roof (and for good reason). If you find yourself in this situation and you’re the first one who notices a fire on the job site, you’re more than likely going to feel a little panicked. Would you honestly know what to do? It probably goes without saying that you understand the need to react quickly and correctly during this emergency situation. What number do you call for emergency services? Where is the nearest fire extinguisher? Do you know where to meet if you’re required to evacuate? These are just a few things that each of us should know while at work. To ensure a smooth process, please familiarize yourself with your company’s emergency response plan. We may not be emergency personnel, but when an accident is upon us, every second counts so make sure you know what to do! 

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7 Cold Weather Toolbox Talk Topics to Help Keep Workers Safe

When you work outside for a living (especially in Canada, eh?), it can get very cold while on the job. Working outside in the cold may just seem like a normal part of the job. However, the cold weather can bring about many hazards that you need to protect yourself from. If you’re looking for cold weather toolbox talk topics, then checkout the 7 we have listed below. Feel free to share the information with your crew. We also recommend editing our general messages to ensure the topic is relevant to your work taking place.

#1 – Construction Toolbox Talk on Cold Weather [COLD STRESS PREVENTION]

Construction Toolbox Talk Cold Weather

When working in construction, being outside for long periods is part of the job. During the winter months, outdoor work can really be a challenge – as sometimes, temperatures can get quite low. These types of working conditions can lead to cold stress since your work environment becomes naturally cooled. There’s usually a lot more wind which can take heat away from your body. Snow and rain can make your clothing wet as well. Cold stress can lead to hypothermia and occurs when internal body temperatures get too cold and the body can’t warm itself. It usually happens slowly – and workers may not even realize they have been affected by the cold weather. It starts with some shivering and maybe poor judgement or confused thinking. As it progresses, you may notice a lot more shivering, an inability to think or pay attention, slow/shallow breathing, slurred speech and also poor body coordination. It can get so severe in some people that they actually may lose consciousness and have limited breathing with a weak pulse. So, how can you prevent this from happening at work? The most obvious way would be to eliminate your exposure to the cold. Ask yourself if the work can be done in another location. If that’s not possible, find out if you can get some heated shelters setup close to the work you’re conducting. You can also try work rotation to limit the amount of time you spend outside – this will give your body a chance to warm-up. It goes without saying that you would always dress appropriately when working outside. Please check with your Supervisor to find out what forms of cold weather clothing is acceptable and make sure it doesn’t interfere with your Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) requirements.

#2 – Working in the Cold Weather [SIGNS OF COLD STRESS]

Cold Weather Toolbox Talk

There are risks of working outside for a living – especially in the winter months in colder climates. One of the main risks that workers should be aware of is cold stress. This happens to people who get too cold, and their body is unable to warm itself. It starts slow, so sometimes it may be difficult to even know if you or your co-workers have been impacted by it. What should you look for? Well, there are many signs of cold stress including: shivering, poor judgement, inability to pay attention, slow/shallow breathing – and in the worst scenarios, it can cause a loss of consciousness. So, pay close attention to how your body is reacting to the cold – and check your co-workers too. They may not even be aware that they are being impacted by cold stress. If you do notice signs of cold stress in either yourself or your co-workers, please get to a heated area so your body has a chance to warm-up. On really cold days, check with your Supervisor to see if it’s possible to get a heated shelter close to the work taking place.

#3 – Winter Weather Toolbox Talk [SNOW HAZARDS]

Winter Weather Toolbox Talk

The snow can be beautiful – everything is covered with a fresh blanket of beautiful white fluff. There’s no denying it’s pretty. However, it can also lead to some pretty serious injuries, too! This is an area of particular concern during the months following summer. We are so used to sunshine, dry surfaces, and warmth – so when the first snowfall happens, it can really throw us off our game. We may not be as cognizant about checking what may be lurking underneath the snow (insert jaws theme music here). Ok, so maybe a giant, human-eating shark isn’t a real concern; however, things like small pieces of plastic, which may not have presented a hazard during the warmer months, can actually become a slipping hazard if you’re not careful! So, how can you protect yourself from hazards you can’t actually see? All it takes is awareness and a willingness to take a little extra time getting from point A to point B. Be mindful of things under the snow that could cause you to slip, trip and fall. It could be anything from a piece of plywood left behind from a previous shift, or maybe plastic packaging that was improperly discarded and left laying on the ground. When walking in areas where snow is present, just slow down and take small steps. Be prepared for things under the snow that can cause you to fall.

#4 – Working in Cold Safety Talk [DRESS APPROPRIATELY]

Working in Cold Weather Safety Talk

While working outside, you may wonder how you can possibly stay warm – especially in the winter months, right? Well, one of the best things you can do is dress appropriately for the colder weather. Common sense tells us that you wouldn’t show up at work on a cold winter day wearing shorts and a t-shirt. However, sometimes even your best efforts in selecting the right attire for cold days at work won’t keep you warm. A tip is to dress in layers. What does this mean? Well, layer your clothing so you are getting additional protection from the cold temperatures. By layering, you can add or remove clothing as required. You don’t have to dress like Joey in the episode of Friends when he put on all of Chandler’s clothing to prove a point. However, you could try wearing a thin t-shirt as your first layer, and then putting a warmer sweater over top of it. Doing so will give you multiple layers of protection from the cold weather. WARNING: Don’t wear so many articles of clothing that it restricts your ability to move freely, as this causes a whole other hazard in itself! You should also make sure your clothing choices align with your employers Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) policies.

# 5 – Cold Weather Safety [SLIPPERY SURFACES EVERYWHERE]

Slippery Surfaces Everywhere

How many times have we heard the warning about slippery surfaces during the winter months? We all know about the dangers of slip hazards, yet somehow, we all seem to have a story about experiencing a nasty fall we didn’t expect. You know how it is – your mind is somewhere other than thinking about the slippery path of travel ahead, you don’t anticipate any type of trouble, and then all of a sudden you’ve lost your footing and you’re laying on the ground. Like most people, you try to get up as quickly as possible and then immediately look around to see who noticed your little tumble. Yes, this situation can be embarrassing, but it can also cause injury. Things like fractures, sprains (and a bruised ego) can all result from a slip, trip and fall. So, how can you protect yourself? One of the best things you can do is stay focused on your path of travel. Be mindful of possible slip, trip and fall hazards and take steps to avoid them. Don’t take shortcuts through icy/snowy areas – stick to designated walkways that have been sanded/salted. If you come across slippery surfaces, do something to bring attention to the hazard so your co-workers don’t become injured – try signage or flagging off the area.

# 6 – Winter Working Toolbox Talk [BEWARE OF FROSTBITE]

Winter Working

This cold weather toolbox talk will help you and your team understand the more about frostbite. The term “frostbite” definitely doesn’t sound pleasant – and there’s a reason for that. In case you’re not familiar, frostbite is a result of being exposed to cold temperatures for a long period of time. So, what does frostbite look like? Usually, your skin will become white and you won’t have much circulation. In the worst possible scenario, blisters can actually form (ouch!) If you have signs of frostbite, it’s important that it’s treated properly. The first thing you need to do is warm-up. You can add extra clothing or cover up with a blanket. Make sure you also get out of the cold and into a warm location. When inside, you can put the frostbitten area in warm water (not hot). Remove any wet or tight clothing that may cut off blood flow to the affected area. DO NOT rub the affected area because rubbing causes damage to the skin and tissue. The cold weather is here to stay for a while yet, so keep your guard up against cold weather injuries. 

#7 – Toolbox Talks Cold Weather [SPRAINED MUSCLES – OUCH!]

Toolbox Talks Cold Weather

This cold weather toolbox talk will help you understand the impact the cold can have on your muscles. When the weather is cold, it seems to bring out all our aches and pains. Why does this happen? Well, the cold weather actually deceases blood flow to our muscles. This means they instantly tighten up when we are exposed to low temperatures. A tight, cold muscle shortens its length, and this reduces our range of motion. As a result, all those “normal” tasks that we conduct each day, such as walking up the stairs or reaching overhead, are much more difficult in the colder weather. A strained or “pulled” muscle occurs when a shortened muscle is lengthened beyond its comfort zone. During the cold weather, even the simplest tasks like picking up a bag on the ground, or tying our shoes can result in a pulled muscle. Please keep this in mind, and practice caution while working outdoors. 

We hope you enjoyed our cold weather toolbox talk topics. If you need more topics, please see our menu on the left.

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