To grit or not to grit?!

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Slipping and tripping

It will be no surprise to learn that slips and trips increase during the winter months.   There are effective actions that you can take to reduce the risk of a slip or trip. Small or large sites, it is important to always ensure that regularly used walkways are looked after to avoid unnecessary accidents.

Frost, ice and snow.

·         To reduce the risk of slips on frost, ice or snow, you need to assess the risk and put in a system to manage it.  Sussex Gritting Services can provide free advice on this.

·         Identify the outdoor areas used by pedestrians most likely to be affected by ice, for example: – building entrances, car parks, pedestrian walkways, shortcuts, sloped areas and areas constantly in the shade or wet.

·         Monitor the temperature, as prevention is key.  Sussex Gritting Services monitor the temperature daily throughout the winter season, and will notify you when there is a risk of snow or ice.

·         With your agreement, Sussex Gritting Services will act whenever freezing road surface temperatures are forecast.


Why do we grit?

Salt, used for gritting, can stop ice forming and cause existing ice or snow to melt. It is most effective when it is ground down by traffic or pedestrians.

Gritting should be carried out when frost, ice or snow is forecast or when walkways are likely to be damp or wet and the floor temperatures are at, or below freezing. The best times are early in evening before the frost settles and/or early in the morning before employees arrive. Salt doesn’t work instantly; it needs enough time to dissolve into the moisture on the floor.

If we grit when it is raining heavily the salt may be washed away.  Sussex Gritting Services will always work throughout the night in accordance with the weather forecast.

Why you need Sussex Gritting Services

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The Winter Months

Slip and fall law suits increase significantly in winter, where icy surfaces increase hazards and snow may not have been cleared. As a business, you are required to keep areas such as aisles, stairs, walkways, car parks, and other parts of the premises reasonably safe for clients and employees.

Legal Liability in Winter

Your legal liability depends on whether the danger was foreseeable. Given that winter maintenance is easily available, and the fact that seasonal weather changes are largely predictable, mean that you are likely to be liable.

In years of very cold temperatures, A&E visits doubled to some hospitals as people struggled to navigate poorly gritted or unclear roads.

Preparation is Key

Preparation is key to maintaining safe business premises through the winter. It is often too late to start thinking about winter maintenance when the ice or snow is already on the ground.

SGS do offer an emergency response service, but priority is always given to our existing customers. It is always better to plan in advance to ensure safe access to your premises as soon as possible.

Despite the milder winter last year, we are seeing an increase in businesses taking out gritting and snow clearing contracts. That’s because if we are not needed then there is no charge to your company. No retaining fees mean that if we are not needed, you don’t pay.

Many clients have commented on the reassurance they feel, knowing that we take the stress out of not only keeping staff and visitors safe on their outside premises, but also being able to keep trading on days when they had previously had to close the business due to the weather conditions.

Minimising the effect of Winter on Your Business

In 2013, the snow cost the UK economy a reported £500m per day as the infrastructure couldn’t cope with snow and ice. The Office of National Statistics estimated that it caused the economy to contract by 0.5%.

Contact for more information.

Slips and Trips at Work

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Slips, trips and falls by employees in the workplace, or by visitors to your site, can have a big impact on your liability insurance. Claims are increasing year on year, costing UK businesses millions of pounds, much of which could be prevented with pre-winter preparation.

Safeguard your Deliveries this Winter

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In 2013, Snow and ice prevented deliveries and caused firms to close up shop, affecting 70% of SMEs, said Lloyds TSB Commercial. The study found that across the UK, 39% of small businesses
were either forced to close its premises, or were cut off by snow or ice. Meanwhile, 42% experienced disrupted supplies or deliveries.

On-site Safety for your Visitors

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Businesses such as shopping centres, retailers, hotels, pubs, restaurants and leisure facilities rely on customers visiting their site for revenue. If your car parks and walkways aren’t safe to drive or walk on, then people will be reluctant to visit and may not return. With the run up to Christmas being the busiest time of year for the retail, leisure and hospitality industries, you can’t afford not to maintain access points and car parks.