Winter is coming, whether we like it or not. Winter 2014/15 was a tough one for construction crews all over New England. If that season was any indication of what this season will be like, you’ll want to be prepared with winter construction tools and equipment that help keep the worksite performing at optimal levels, and your crew comfortable and safe from winter-related hazards. There are four key areas of equipment that you will want to focus on: heating, snow removal, weather protection, and wearable winter accessories.
Perhaps the biggest challenge to keeping your construction project running smoothly is providing the job site with heat during the winter months. Ground thaw and space heating are primary winter concerns. To combat freezing conditions, you can look to several construction equipment solutions such as construction heaters including:
- Portable Air Heaters – to warm up small enclosed areas.
- Hydronic Ground Heaters – to soften frozen surface areas.
- Salamanders – moveable blower-type heaters with a rise up to 90°.
- Convection Heaters – propane-fired heat with ample distribution.
- Radiant Heaters – high-intensity infrared heat in floor models, wall mount or extendable stands.
Heaters can be fired by propane, electricity, diesel, kerosene, and gas. The key is to look for a BTU output that is sufficient for the area requiring heat.
Snowbound sites can add time and expense to your project. Snow removal is not often built into project cost, so the faster you can clear the white stuff, the quicker your crew is back to work. Whether you need to remove ice or snow, construction crews should be equipped to clear the site fast with tools such as:
- Ice Melt & Spreaders – clear frozen surfaces in minutes.
- Snow Shovels – hand-held tools for clearing small areas.
- Snow Movers – professional grade snowblowers.
- Loaders (for the big storms) – Whacker wheel and Bobcat skid-steer loaders for big snow removal jobs.
When you select snow removal equipment, be sure to account for snowfalls of up to 36 inches. If New England gets hit like the winter of 2014/15, you’ll need all the snow removal equipment, tools, and supplies you can store and rely on.
Protection from winter’s harsh conditions means keeping sand piles from freezing, blocking wind through structures, keeping scaffolds clear, and other protective steps. Recent advances in technology and fabrication have given the construction industry several useful options for keeping crew and site protected from Mother Nature including:
- Heated Pads – for thawing dirt piles and small ground areas or curing concrete.
- Scaffold Sheeting – to provide a protective enclosure against wind, snow and other elements.
- Reinforced Poly Sheeting – for covering uncured concrete, materials and equipment.
- Flame-retardant Tarps – large sheets that surround a building frame.
- Concrete Curing Blankets – heavy duty reinforced poly covers to cure concrete during tough winter conditions.
When selecting a winter protection solution, it’s a good idea to plan on adding 5-10 square feet of coverage outside the protected area to ensure maximum protection.
Rain, sleet, snow, wind, and freezing temperatures can all wreak havoc at the construction site. To keep your crew at maximum productivity, they’ve got to be able to keep performing even under harsh conditions. Without hand, eye, head, and body accessories, they’ll be hindered from properly handling construction tools and equipment, which could also result in injury. The answer is to outfit your crew with winter accessories that will keep them working. Before winter gets here, consider providing your crew with accessories such as:
- Winter Jackets
- Winter Gloves
- Hard Hat Liners
- Face Protection
- Winter Work Boots
Keep Your Jobsite Performing and Safe, Even in Harsh Conditions
Winter doesn’t have to mean work stoppage and jobsite downtime. With the right construction tools and equipment for winter job sites, your crew will be safe and efficient on the job. Contact us to speak with a representative for more information on our supply of winter equipment and our rental options to keep you performing this winter.