Corporate Safety

Tips to Help Workers Stay Safe in Ice and Snow

December 20 2012

Frank Knapfel, Regional Director of Safety & Health, G4S North America, provides some tips for staying safe while working outside in the ice and snow

Many people have work schedules that include spending some time outdoors. With winter approaching, it’s never too early to start thinking about safety plans for severe weather.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, slips, trips and falls make up the majority of general accidents. Frank Knapfel, Regional Director of Safety & Health, G4S North America provides some tips for staying safe while working outside in the ice and snow.

“Generally, people who are used to ice and snow are well prepared, but it’s amazing how many times people rush or forget three things: planning, caution and common sense,” said Knapfel. “That’s why these simple tips are a great reminder.”

G4S Safety Matters — Tips for Working in Ice and Snow

  • Be sure to check the daily forecast before heading to work so you know if severe weather will affect your day
  • Give yourself extra time to complete your normal outside routine
  • Whenever possible use cleared walkways
  • Don’t be tempted by shortcuts through the snow
  • Invest in some slip resistant boots or shoes or traction devices that snap on to your regular footwear
  • Take your time climbing stairs, plant your feet firmly and always use the handrails
  • Take short steps and walk slowly on ice and snow so you can react to any loss of traction
  • Even if the outside work area or path looks clear, use caution
  • “Black ice,” which is a thin layer of ice that can be invisible in certain sunlight conditions, can pose a risk
  • When carrying items remember your sense of balance while walking on ice or snow may be affected
  • Try to keep one hand free to use railings or to help balance
  • On entering a building, remove all of the snow from shoes and wipe footwear as dry as possible
  • When exiting or entering vehicles use the vehicle for support

“Safety Matters” is a periodic communications on safety issues from the G4S North America Safety Committee. If you have suggestions for topics or issues you wish to address, please contact

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About G4S Secure Solutions
G4S Secure Solutions is the nation’s leading security company, providing a wide range of security services and technology solutions. The G4S expertise in analyzing security needs and developing specialized programs enables customers to reduce the total cost of ownership for security and related services, and focus on quality improvement and risk reduction. For more information visit:

About G4S
G4S is the world’s leading secure outsourcing group, specializing in outsourcing of business processes in sectors where security and safety risks are considered a strategic threat. G4S is the largest employer quoted on the London Stock Exchange and has a secondary stock exchange listing in Copenhagen. G4S has operations in more than 125 countries and over 657,000 employees. For more information on G4S, visit