Winter De-icing

February 13, 2023

Ice Removal Best Practices

Utilize the following guidance to ensure proper ice removal procedures on the job site:

Use the right mixture. The most effective method for de-icing an outdoor walking surface is to apply a chemical mixture throughout the area to either melt any existing ice or to prevent ice from forming altogether. This mixture typically includes rock salt (sodium chloride), magnesium chloride pellets or calcium chloride pellets. That being said, make sure to use the correct mixture for the conditions at hand.

Rock salt is most effective in temperatures above -15 degrees Celsius.

Calcium chloride pellets and magnesium chloride pellets are most effective in temperatures below -15 degrees Celsius.

Regardless of which mixture you use, consider incorporating sand into your mixture before applying it to the surface. Doing so will help limit the amount of mixture you use and allow for extra traction when applied to the surface, thus minimizing the risk of slips and trips.

Watch the weather. Keep an eye on the weather forecast to determine when you need to apply the de-icing mixture to outdoor walking surfaces. This mixture should be applied when temperatures are below freezing or if conditions such as snow, hail or sleet are possible.

Apply the mixture correctly. Make sure you apply the de-icing mixture in thin, even layers across outdoor walking surfaces. Try to apply one layer before conditions occur, one or more layers while these conditions are taking place and a final layer after conditions have passed. Keep in mind that if there is snow on a surface, it will need to be shoveled first before you can apply the mixture. Simplify the de-icing process by shoveling snow after every few centimetres of accumulation rather than all at once.

Protect your hands. Keep your hands properly protected when applying the de-icing mixture by wearing thick mittens and using a scoop to distribute the mixture.


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