Snow, Sleet, and Black Ice: 6 Winter Considerations for Home & Commercial Property Safety

Winter brings boughs of holly, dustings of snow, and chilly days to freeze the frost in even longer. Whether you’re a homeowner or a property manager, there are many areas of the property that you should keep your eye on during this cold spell to reduce safety and maintenance dangers.

Every accident can’t be avoided, but effort helps to manage risks and make things safer. Becoming familiar with the most common serious winter dangers near you can also help. Keep the following tips in mind to keep your property, your visitors, or your family safer this winter.

Assess the Property for Safety Concerns While the Weather Is Nice

Be sure to check the property for possible safety issues before the weather turns.

Ahead of time, ensure common areas like parking lots, driveways, and sidewalks don’t have major cracks, potholes, or other issues that tend to cause problems when ice lingers. Visitors should never have to work to avoid tripping on concrete.

Look carefully at the condition of handrails and how well they are secured. If the handrails have any damage at all, someone could slip while walking on ice. Also, checking drainage pipes and downspouts. Ice can accumulate if they are pooling water, and repair might be necessary before the winter chill sets in.

Keep De-Icing and Anti-Icing Products On Hand

Anti-icing formulas are for preemptive use before the storm as they make it harder for the snow to become adhered to surfaces. Anti-icing sprays and other products can be a significant winter relief as they reduce the buildup of snow and also lower the amount of work that’s required to remove snow and ice.  

After the snow, de-icing products like salt and other forms help to melt the fresh snowfall. Typically, both products will be necessary to keep up with blizzard-like conditions. Stock up in advance and figure out which products work best for your property.

Failing to stay on top of ice buildup could be an unsafe and expensive error. Ice that hasn’t been treated can have a slick top layer, which becomes dangerous for visitors or tenants. Not only is it difficult to see, but untreated ice also gets thicker and firmer as it stands while temperatures remain very low. By sprinkling salt and sand on stairs, parking lots, walkways, and common areas, you can remove this danger almost entirely.

Don’t Underestimate The Power of Light

Lighting can be a serious help when conditions are slippery and hazardous due to winter storms. Homeowners and property owners, who wonder, “Can you sue if you get hurt on someone’s property in New York?” The answer is yes; if someone can prove that your property caused the injuries. Getting sued is never fun, but it would be regrettable if one of your visitors were injured because you failed to light the property adequately.

Installing adequate lighting in the locations that are used the most can help avoid slips and trips on ice. Adding lighting to main entryways, stairs, walkways, and parking lots can dramatically help increase the safety of your property.

Reduce Snow Build-up On The Roof

Double-check your roofs to ensure they are ready to hold the weight that ice, hail, and snow will bring this season. Examine the condition of gutters, vents, and rooftop air conditioners. Clear away any debris and leaves so that there are no blocks for snow and ice to drain out.

Don’t Hurt Yourself Removing Snow

It’s best to contact a local snow removal service to drop sand, salt, and remove snow. These professionals are covered by insurance and have the equipment and training necessary to be safe while getting the job done. Homeowners might be able to complete the task themselves, but statistics show that 11,500 people have to be seen in emergency rooms every year because of snow shovel-related injuries. Whether your property is large or small, contracting services through local professionals is safer for everyone.

Plan It Out Early

Since winter weather can be unpredictable, it’s a good idea to have plans for everything prepared before the chill sets in. Customize your plan with what works best for you, but it could prove helpful to list phone numbers for safety resources and maintenance providers.

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