With summer in the air, it’s easy to forget about the safety protocols involved when working in icy environments. But ice safety should be a year round concern for employers, especially when considering the true cost of not enforcing safety measures such as wearing ice cleats. This is because ice is a leading cause of slip-and-fall accidents in winter, and slip-and-fall accidents themselves make up a large percentage of annual worker compensation claims. In fact, here are some eye-opening statistics about slip, trip, and fall type incidents from the US Department of Labor and OSHA:
- Make up approximately 25% of all general industry accidents
- Account for more than 95 million lost work days annually
- Trigger 15% of all accidental workplace deaths (second only to motor vehicle accidents)
- Are the leading cause of accidents in restaurants, hotels, and public buildings
- Result in more than $1.8 billion worth of worker’s compensation claims each year
- Are a contributing factor in steeply rising insurance rates (currently averaging 30% per annum)
These costs, both in terms of real money and lost productivity, show why it’s important for business owners to stay on top of ice safety enforcement even in the warmer months. Things to do now include updating safety posters and reminders in break rooms and locker rooms; reviewing disciplinary procedures for employees that fail to wear ice cleats when required; inspecting stored ice cleats to ensure the storage environment is holding up well; and visiting CozyWinters to order new equipment for recent hires.
Once your employees realize how serious you are about enforcing ice safety they will begin following the rules more diligently, so it’s in everyone’s best interest to keep the conversation going year round.
If asked to cite factors that contribute to a good night’s sleep, most people would probably list things like a supportive mattress, comfortable pillow, darkened room, and quiet environment. They might even go so far as to include on the list various lifestyle choices such as refraining from alcohol and caffeine consumption in the few hours before bedtime and banishing screens (smartphones, tablets, computers, and televisions) from the sleeping room.
But while all of those variables are indeed important to getting restful sleep, the most crucial part of the equation is ambient temperature. That’s because the ambient temperature in the sleeping room has a direct influence on body temperature, which in turn plays a major role in the sleep cycle. Your body temperature fluctuates throughout the day and begins to drop to a lower set point when your circadian rhythm indicates that it’s time to sleep. If the sleeping environment is too warm your body temperature will also remain elevated, thus making comfortable sleep more difficult to achieve.
So how can you find your perfect sleeping room temperature? Sleep experts advise settling on a “thermally neutral” ambient temperature (one in which your body neither shivers nor sweats) that is comfortable for you. For most people this typically falls between 60 and 72 degrees Fahrenheit year round. Since that’s a fairly wide range, the best way to determine your personal number is to test different temperatures and record the results.
Furthermore, if you live in an area where temperatures vary significantly with the seasons, then you’ll likely need the help of specialized products to regulate room temperature, including some or all of the following:
- Thermostat adjustable heating and cooling units, such as central heat/air conditioning, window AC units, and ceiling fans
- ChiliPad heating and cooling mattress pad that warms or cools your body based on custom temperature settings
- Heated mattress pad, electric blanket, or heated foot-of-the-bed warmer for wintertime use
- Cool Pad breathable cooling body pad for spring and summer use
- Temperature regulating pillow that either heats or cools in response to the skin’s microclimate
If you’re having trouble getting restful sleep night after night, your bedroom temperature might be to blame. Try controlling the ambient temperature using one of the methods suggested above until you succeed in creating the perfect sleep environment for your tastes.