Dealing with Severe Weather Conditions

It’s coming to the time of year when arctic conditions play havoc with our roads, transport and importantly our employees attempts to attend work.

If you don’t already have a policy in place, you should consider having one put in place as soon as you can as this could help alleviate any possibilities of misunderstandings arising.

Every organisation is different and will devise a policy to suit their particular needs and circumstances.  As the health, safety and welfare of employees at work is an important obligation for employers, some general points for you to consider when devising an adverse weather policy include:

  • Consider whether it is necessary for employees to attend the workplace at their normal time or whether there are alternative ways for them to work;
  • Consider how absences and lateness caused by severe weather or transport disruptions will be treated;
  • Employees who are absent from work without authorisation aren’t entitled to be paid but you may wish to consider taking a more lenient approach in severe weather conditions particularly where there is no transport available and walking to work is not viable option;
  • Always investigate the reason(s) for an employee’s non-attendance before stopping his or her pay;
  • Remember to treat all employees consistently to avoid the risk of discrimination claims;
  • Some employees may need to make arrangements for childcare if schools or nurseries are closed due to severe weather therefore these employees must be allowed to take reasonable time off  to make suitable arrangements for the care of their children;
  • The health, safety and welfare of your employees at work is an important obligation for employers.

Should you require any assistance in devising a policy, please contact us on 01738 632561.