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Six risks to your business this winter season


Winter woes can impact your business. Here are some hazards to look out for and how AccuWeather can help you better protect your company.

Key Highlights

Plan for ground and logistical disruptions and identify alternate supply routes

Employee sickness is one of the top cold-weather risks for small businesses and can have a disastrous effect on productivity

AccuWeather's SkyGuard Warning Service will give you location-specific forecasts and 24x7x365 consulting services for any weather event


When a cold air mass moves in and causes a temperature drop, it could be costly to your business if unprepared. When AccuWeather For Business meteorologists warn that colder temperatures could cause an issue where your assets are located, businesses should be prepared for these winter weather risks. 


Heavy snow and ice can cause delays in shipments and other significant impacts by forcing delays or even shutting down your operations.  

Ways to prepare: 

  • Plan for ground logistics disruptions, and identify alternate supply routes due to road closures, downed trees, and power outages 
  • Coordinate your preparedness activities with vendors, supply chain members, and local partners
  • Back up computers and prepare to work remotely if you can't access your building 
  • Reviewing business insurance policies to ensure you're covered for cold-weather incidents, including damage to property and inventory


Extreme cold, strong winds, and ice accumulating on tree branches and power lines may lead to power outages. 

Ways to prepare: 

  • Secure a generator, and ensure it can maintain functions critical to operations 
  • Since phone communications may also be out, review policies and procedures and identify ways to reach employees and clients effectively 
  • Check emergency lighting to make sure it is functioning 
  • Check for hanging branches near your facility that could break, causing powerlines to snap 


Employee sickness is one of the top cold-weather risks for small businesses and can have a disastrous effect on productivity.

Ways to prepare: 

  • Prioritize cold weather concerns for outdoor workers: provide warm liquids and designate warming areas
  • Protect your company against liability by ensuring employees driving in bad weather on company time are trained in safe, cautious driving techniques and know the actions to take in the event of an accident
  • Encourage employees to stay home when they are sick
  • Keep work areas free of snow and ice to reduce the chance of slips and falls


Snow and ice on walkways, parking lots, and work surfaces are common causes for employees and customers. 

Ways to prepare: 

  • Retail: Shovel and salt walkways, dry high-traffic areas inside near your entrance
  • Put up "Wet Floor" signs, and keep all floors clear to help prevent falls and reduce liability
  • Check drainage areas and make any repairs so water doesn't collect and freeze over 
  • Fill potholes and cracks when the area is free of snow and ice to prevent uneven surfaces


When temperatures plummet, it could significantly impact your business if pipes freeze and rupture. 

Ways to prepare: 

  • Monitor and record temperatures in areas that house vulnerable equipment and repeat every few hours
  • Drain water-cooled equipment and drain condensed moisture from compressed lines 
  • Check both wet and dry pipe sprinkler systems to ensure they are ice-free 
  • Insulate pipes and leave taps dripping; review business insurance policies to ensure you're covered for cold-weather incidents, including damage to property and inventory


Accumulation of snow and ice can lead to a roof collapse or trees falling on your building. 

Ways to prepare: 

  • If possible, designate someone to remove ice and snow accumulation on roofs and drains 
  • Identify areas on the facility's roof that may be weak and unable to hold piles of accumulating snow 
  • Talk with your insurance providers to ensure that you have the necessary types of coverage
  • Take steps to protect inventory to prevent loss due to rupture pipes, building damage, and roof collapse 

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Be protected during cold weather events with our unique SkyGuard Severe Weather Warnings service, which delivers site-specific alerts well in advance with Superior Accuracy™, giving you crucial time to prepare.

Better Benefits with SkyGuard:

  • Integrate with your business’ Emergency Action Plan, mobilizing resources and preparing for storm impact, minimizing weather-related risks and losses
  • Receive advance notice well before severe weather impacts occur, ensuring employee safety with proactive, site-specific alerts 
  • Tailor your organization’s thresholds based on equipment and operational needs
  • Reduce false alarms and minimize service interruptions, ultimately saving time and money
  • Gain access to adaptable situational awareness tools as well as direct consultation 

If you do not use AccuWeather, you may risk the lives of your employees and customers.

Contact us today to learn how you can access the most accurate forecasts and earlier warnings so you can make the best weather-impacted decisions every time.

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Partner with AccuWeather For Business to weather the storm. 

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