When workers perform strenuous tasks in cold weather, such as shoveling snow, overexertion can lead to sore muscles, back strain and possible heart attacks.

Consider the physical condition of anyone doing stressful outdoor work before assigning them. Diabetics, heart patients and persons with vascular and thyroid problems are more susceptible to cold-weather stress.

● Use mechanical or motorized equipment to minimize demanding tasks such as shoveling snow; use hand shovels with ergonomic handles.

● Workers must follow all safety guidelines and procedures when clearing or un-jamming powered snow removal equipment.

● Make sure workers know how to perform assigned tasks safely, and use the proper tools.

● Employees should know the symptoms of cold-related stress, and monitor themselves – and coworkers. A “buddy system” helps workers keep track of each other.