Snow ploughs and grit spreaders: This is how we can winter-proof your company
Winter is coming, and with the falling temperatures comes the increased risk of ice and snow. Caution must now be exercised on the company premises too! As an employer, you are responsible for ensuring that paths, access roads and parking spaces are cleared and gritted. This is regulated by law in the Obligations to ensure road safety specified in the German Civil Code (Bürgerliches Gesetzbuch – BGB). Failure to comply with the obligation to clear snow and spread grit can have fatal consequences: If a customer or supplier gets hurt, they may sue for damages. If a company employee is affected, the statutory accident insurance is liable, but you must expect a period of absence from work. How can you avoid accidents during the cold season? With a well organised winter service and our five tips!
1. Who is responsible?
As the manager of a company, you usually don’t have the time to clear and grit the area. With a clearing and gritting plan you can delegate this work to your staff. Alternatively, you can hire a commercial building cleaning company or a caretaker to shovel the snow. Important: It will still be your responsibility to ensure that the obligation to clear snow and spread grit is fulfilled! For this reason, you should regularly check whether the person responsible for winter maintenance is actually doing the job.
2. Broad paths, clear access roads
The larger the company premises, the more time the clearing and spreading service needs. But don’t worry: You don’t have to clear the whole area! Broad paths, which allow staff to access all operational areas, are good enough. Make sure that access roads, footpaths and parking spaces are cleared of snow and ice as quickly as possible.
3. Your assistants: Grit spreaders and snow ploughs
Provide your employees with snow shovels made of fibreglass-reinforced plastic or with snow ploughs with stainless steel blades. Snow ploughs with rollers and shovels with grips make movements ergonomic and easy on the back. After the shovelling, you should spread a suitable winter grit over the cleared area. Use a grit spreader to distribute the grit evenly over a large area.
4. Road salt? No thanks!
After the clearing, it’s time to spread grit. Road salt is very harmful to the environment and is even banned in some cities. Instead, use granules, sand or stone chips. Our advice: Sweep up the grit after use and use it again next winter.
5. Preparation is better than remediation
If a thick blanket of snow builds up on the roads, the winter grit quickly runs out. Remember to buy enough grit early on for winter maintenance. It is best to store this in a weather-proof grit container. That way, it won’t get damp and will keep for several years. Boxes that can be lifted by forklifts and stacked allow grit to be transported with ease and stored in a way that saves space.
Do you still need a grit container, a grit spreader or a snow shovel? You can learn about our winter service products here.