Shoveling snow is hard work. It’s a whole workout – out in the cold to boot. And in boots… It’s no wonder it can be dangerous for your body. At the same time, however, shoveling snow safely can protect people from falls and reduce theft and home break-ins.
Wait. Reduce theft? What does that have to do with shoveling snow, you ask?
Read on. We’ll tell you how to shovel snow safely to avoid injury and detract criminals with a few strategic moves.
Tips for Shoveling Snow Safely and Wisely
Following are a few tips about how to shovel snow safely, based on recommendations from the National Safety Council.
- Do not shovel after eating or while smoking.
- Just like any other workout: stretch first and lift with your legs, not your back.
- Don’t wait too long to shovel snow after it has fallen because it will get wet, heavy, and more compact. Shovel when it’s fresh and light.
- Push the snow away with the shovel rather than lifting it. If you must lift the snow to toss it away, only shovel small amounts of snow with each lift.
- Beware of carbon monoxide and other fumes from snow blowers.
- Make sure your snow blower is off before refueling.
- Try not to create mounds of snow. Prowlers may be able to hide behind them. If you can, spread out the snow as you are shoveling.
- But do shovel! If your property is maintained, it probably means you are home or will be soon. If you plan to be away for a significant amount of time, consider hiring someone to shovel your snow for you.
- Consider using the snow to cover up valuable yard ornaments, which are stolen or vandalized more often than people realize.
- If you have a basement window, shoveling snow against the window can keep people from seeing the valuables that you have inside. (As an added bonus, it will serve as insulation to keep the draft out of your house.)
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And by all means, don’t forget to enjoy our beautiful winter! It will be summertime again before you know it.