It's snowing. Snow is fun, and lots of us will have a rare day off today to go sledging, have a snowball fight, watch daytime TV and generally do anything we like other than going to work.
However, some of us will have to go to work despite the weather. This is some potentially life-saving advice for anyone who finds themselves layering up and trudging in regardless.
1) Do not drive anywhere under any circumstances. Avon and Somerset Police have advised not to use any roads in the region. People have had serious incidents on the Bristol roads over the last 24 hours. Don't risk life and limb for a boss who would replace you in a few weeks if anything happened. There aren't any buses running currently either, so if you can't safely walk to work, don't go in.
2) Your workplace needs to be properly heated. If your workplace is below 13 degrees C, your boss is breaking the law. Go home.
3) If you work outdoors, your boss still has a legal duty to keep you safe and well. In this temperature, this should mean canceling or postponing anything except the most important work. The Health and Safety Executive recommends a number of steps which employers should take to keep employees safe when outdoors in the cold. These include:
-Issuing PPE which is appropriate to the weather,
-Providing facilities where workers can get warm and encouraging workers to drink plenty of hot drinks,
-Giving workers more frequent rest breaks,
-Making sure workers know how to recognise the early warning signs for cold stress.
Your employer has a duty to keep you safe. If you absolutely have to work today, make sure they're keeping up their end.
Otherwise, enjoy the snow!