CBIZ Sattler Adventure Sports Blog

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Ward, Hayden
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From Snowfall to Revenue: 12 Essential Safety Measures for Winter Outfitter Businesses

 12 Days of Safety for Adventure Sports Businesses

Don't let safety concerns dampen your holiday spirit and turn into risk-mas. Whether it’s potential property damage or weather-related risks, winter can significantly impact your business’s operations. From snow removal plans to security cameras, here are 12 days of safety measures for your adventure sports business to follow.

Day 1: Assess Winter Weather Threats

On the first day of safety, we’re here to remind you that all businesses need to conduct a risk assessment. This can help them identify areas that  winter weather  can threaten. Developing and utilizing a winter preparedness checklist can assist owners in reviewing their risks, as exposures can vary by location and industry.

Don’t forget that a thorough inspection of your business's property can help prevent winter weather damage and other issues. Check the roof, drainage, windows, doors and other outside property to ensure it’s ready for winter and make any necessary repairs or modifications.

Day 2: Winter Weather Supplies

Unlike the serenity and peace that comes with two turtle doves, severe weather can leave employees and customers stranded at the place of business. Having an emergency kit with essentials, including food, water, blankets and first-aid supplies, can help ensure their safety.

Day 3: Fire Escape Plans

The weather outside might be frightful, and the fire is so delightful but portable fire extinguishers should be provided and correctly maintained for potential incidents. The National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA) recommends that extinguishers should be tested every five years, depending on the type.

  • Make an escape plan.
  • Draw a map of your business showing all the doors and windows.
  • Post the escape plan in the property.
  • All windows and doors should open easily. Leave instructions for your staff if there's a "trick" to open any.

Day 4: Snow & Ice Removal Plans

Walking on thin ice is dangerous, especially when it’s slippery! Slip and fall claims are extremely common during the winter and can happen to anyone. To keep you, your employees and your guests safe, ensure driveways, stairs and sidewalks around your property are clear of  ice and snow.

Whether you decide to hire a contractor or complete the work itself, keeping parking lots and sidewalks clear is essential. You may want to consider stocking your business with these winter amenities:

  • Shovel
  • Ice melt or road salt
  • Broom

Day 5: Security System

For burglars, it’s the most wonderful time of the year, especially if they believe your business is stocked with five golden rings. Most thefts occur when valuables are left out in plain view or when guests are present in your business.  Thefts can also be a part of your team. Don't tempt those Grinches! A security system is always a wise investment. Though they are expensive, not having one could cost you more especially if you operate a  retail store.

Day 6: Heating System

To keep the holiday spirit glowing for the right reasons, and avoid turning into Crisp Kringle, make sure to give combustible items a little space by keeping them at least three feet away from any heating units. Don't forget to give your vents a little TLC by keeping them clear of any dust or debris. Having a heating system tune-up can help ensure it is working properly and ready for cold weather. And when it's time to snuggle up with a cup of cocoa, be sure to turn off those portable heaters when leaving the room or heading home for the day. Remember, always use the manufacturer-recommended fuel for your space heaters.

Day 7: Water Safety

Cue the seven swans a-swimming! If your business’s property is unoccupied for a few weeks, shut off the main water valve, open up your faucets and drain your water lines. Cleaning and  clearing your gutters and roof  before you leave is crucial. Keep in mind that major snow buildup or excessive water runoff can result in massive property or water damage.

Day 8: CO Alarms

Sleigh bells ring, are you listening? Or are those sounds your Carbon Monoxide detectors (CO alarms)? They should be installed in a central location and on every level of the business, as well as other locations where required by applicable laws, codes or standards. CO alarms need to be tested at least once a month and batteries should be replaced every six months. Experts suggest calling your local fire department’s non-emergency phone line to find out what number to call if the CO alarm sounds.

Day 9: Winter Weather Driving Plan

Businesses should ensure their vehicles are prepared for winter weather and promote safe winter weather driving practices. This may include having infrastructure in place so workers can stay home and work remotely if dangerous road conditions arise.

Day 10: Data Backup

Winter storms can cause unexpected power outages, and businesses must back up their data, as data loss can have significant financial and operational impacts. Securing a backup generator to prepare for these situations are also a wise idea.

Day 11: Freezing Pipes

Water damage from pipe bursts can cause severe property damage. To mitigate this risk, businesses should take steps to prevent their pipes from freezing. This includes unhooking outdoor hoses, draining irrigation systems, installing leak detectors, insulating pipes and keeping the building’s temperature at least 55°F. In some circumstances, keeping a trickle of water flowing through the pipes can also help prevent freezing.

Day 12: Excellent Insurance Coverage

On the twelfth day of safety, we remind you to start the season right with adventure sports insurance. The right coverage can help prevent major financial losses if your business is sued or held legally responsible in the event of bodily injury or damage. Don’t forget the importance of obtaining adequate insurance protection for your business. For additional safety guidance and insurance solutions for your business,  request a free CBIZ Adventure Sport Insurance quote  today.

This blog may contain scenarios that are provided as examples only. Coverage is subject to the terms, conditions and exclusions of the policy issued. The information provided is general in nature and may be affected by changes in law or the interpretation of such laws. The reader is advised to contact a professional prior to taking any action based upon this information.

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CBIZ Sattler Adventure Sports Insurance, a division of CBIZ Insurance Services, Inc., is the largest insurer of adventure sports businesses in the United States. As part of an $850 million New York Stock Exchange traded company (CBZ), we developed a policy coverage to meet the needs for those in the recreation and outfitting industries. Our policy is underwritten by an A.M. Best Rated A++ (Superior) company.