Although we survived the cold snap at the end of 2017, the temperatures plunged again this week, with more snow falling and temperatures at -20°. Skin can freeze in minutes when it’s that cold, with the chill slowly seeping in to your core. When your body’s temperature drops below the ideal 37°, you are at risk of frostbite and hypothermia.
As southeast Calgary’s professional snow removal experts, Mirage Landscaping can help take the onus of shovelling off your shoulders – literally! It’s not too late in the season to contact us for a quote.
Bundle Up to Shovel Show
Dressing properly will help keep the elements at bay while you take care of business. In Calgary’s freezing winter climate, layers are the key. Remember to always pay attention to your temperature and avoid sweating, as body heat and cold temperatures aren’t a healthy mix and will make you susceptible to catching a cold, or worse.
The key is to layer your clothing. Multiple thin layers of clothing are far better than a small number of thick layers. Your temperature will rise as you work, since the body tends to burn more calories in cold weather. Layering your clothing helps you stay in control of your comfort, since you can add and remove clothing as needed while you work.
Here’s a breakdown of how to layer your clothes:
- Begin with a light, thin, full-length base layer. Long underwear and long-sleeved undershirts will keep drafts at bay.
- For your first middle layer, choose fabrics like wool or polyester. They are both warm, yet breathable.
- Add a thicker jacket as your first external layer, then supplement with a waterproof, wind-breaking shell.
- Remember to take care of your extremities. Winter hats are essential for preventing heat loss, and mittens are better than gloves for protecting your fingers.
Shovelling is a physical activity, so that will help keep you nice and warm. But if you have to take a break, make sure to do so indoors. Standing still in the cold is never a good idea, and is even worse when you have been active.
Also remember to keep blinking your eyes. Cold weather causes your eyes to tear up, which reduces their freezing point, so blinking will help keep them working properly. In extreme cold it is recommended you wear ski goggles or some other form of eye protection.
Signs of Hypothermia
Signs that your body is starting to shut down and you should get inside right away include:
- Excessive, uncontrollable shivering
- Difficulty breathing (slow and shallow breaths)
- Increased clumsiness
- The inability to form sentences or complete thoughts
Never, ever drink alcohol before heading out into cold weather to perform a task. Alcohol can make you feel warmer than you actually are and impair decision-making, meaning you might eschew wearing a hat and gloves when you should.
Select the Right Footwear
While you may be tempted to throw on whatever shoes are closest before you head out the door, it’s far better to wear specially designed winter footwear. Winter shoes and boots have unique tread patterns that help you maintain your grip in slippery conditions. They also have superior insulation, helping your feet stay warmer for a longer period of time.
You should also step carefully when you’re outdoors in the snow. Slip and fall accidents can cause serious injuries, and an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
Keeping Your Floors Clean
Even if you have the best snow removal services in Calgary (like those provided by Mirage), there’s no stopping people tracking in slush into your home or business. These winter hacks will help you keep your entryways clean and help you avoid slip and falls on your property, which can create liability nightmares for both home and business owners.
- Place a thick floor mat with well-defined bristles right at the main point of entry to your home or business.
- At home, make it a household rule to wipe your feet when coming indoors and remove your shoes before heading into the house. No exceptions!
- At a place of business, encourage customers to wipe their feet on the mat before entering the store. Put up a sign explaining that everyone needs to do their part to help keep the floor clean and safe. Some visitors might ignore it, but most will comply with your request, and that will get you headed in the right direction.
- Keep towels, rags and mops within easy reach at points of entry. If snow and slush get tracked inside, clean it up right away.
- Plastic runners can also help in offices and places of business. They protect floors while reducing slip and fall hazards. Give them a try if you’re having ongoing problems.
Professional Snow Removal Services for Calgary Homeowners and Businesses
At Mirage Landscaping, we take pride in providing affordable, prompt and reliable snow removal services that help homeowners and businesses bust slush and banish snow. Our services include driveway, sidewalk, and parking lot snow and ice management, all delivered by experienced hard-working professionals. Visit us online today to get a free snow and ice management service quote.