With Veterans Day behind us, I’d like to thank Business Manager Bill McLaughlin and Training Coordinator Mike Carey for the invitation to the Mass Building Trades Helmets to Hardhats Fundraiser Event. This is a great opportunity for Veterans looking to get into the building trades and I’m honored to have the opportunity to attend. I’d also like to wish those members that are veterans a Happy Veterans Day and thank you for your service!

As the winter season rolls in, so do the familiar cold New England temperatures. This edition’s Safety Corner will focus on cold stress, cold weather injuries, and ways to protect yourself.

Workers who are exposed to extreme cold or work in cold environments may be at risk of cold stress. Extremely cold or wet weather is a dangerous situation that can cause occupational illness and injuries such as hypothermia, frostbite, trench foot, and chilblains.

Protect yourself by:
  • Monitoring your physical condition and that of your coworkers.
  • Wear appropriate clothing.
    • Wear several layers of loose clothing for insulation.
    • Tight clothing reduces blood circulation to the extremities.
  • Be aware that some clothing may restrict movement resulting in a hazardous situation.
  • Protect the ears, face, hands, and feet in extremely cold or wet weather.
    • Boots should be waterproof and insulated.
    • Wear a hat to reduce the loss of body heat from your head.
  • Move into warm locations during breaks; limit the amount of time outside.
  • Carry extra socks, gloves, hats, jacket, blankets, a change of clothes, and a thermos of hot liquid.
  • Include chemical hot packs in your first aid kit.
  • Avoid touching cold metal surfaces with bare skin.
  • Stay hydrated.

Be safe out there this winter season!

Peter Carpenter
Co-Safety Officer