Winter Safety 101

Winter is here.

While the weather can provide opportunities for outdoor fun, it can also be dangerous. Freezing temperatures and ice can cause dangerous situations, so make sure you are prepared for what Mother Nature sends your way.

Driving. The cold weather doesn’t only affect the roads. While drivers should always be alert and careful, it’s equally important to prepare the vehicle. Battery power and tire pressure can drop, winter tires might be needed, wiper fluid needs to be rated for -30 degrees, and the gas tank should remain at least half full at all times to avoid freezing.

Shoveling snow. As snow piles up, people tend to shovel it down and create paths in driveways and sidewalks. Physically exerting the body while shoveling snow or using a snowblower can have negative impacts on health due to the high exertion in the cold weather, creating risk for heart attacks and other injuries. To avoid these risks, avoid exertion outside in the cold after eating or smoking, stretch before you begin as you would for any exercise, lift with your legs and shovel fresh, powdery snow that is more lightweight. Pay attention as you work for any signs of heart attack and stop immediately if you feel bad.

Frostbite. If you see signs of frostbite occurring—white or waxy skin, numbness, blisters—seek medical attention immediately, move the victim into a warm place, remove any wet or constricting clothing, and try putting gauze in between the fingers and toes for protection.

Content by Lockton Dunning Benefits with info from

According to the National Safety Council, snow shoveling is responsible for thousands of injuries and as many as 100 deaths nationwide each year.