How to get to work in a snowstorm? - page 12

Hi. I was wondering what your hospitals policy is on snowdays? Ours doesn't have one and I live 1 1/2 hours from work. The highway was actually closed and I was still expected to come in?... Read More

  1. by   mtngrl
    I don't know if anyone mentioned this because I haven't gone through all 15 pages but 4-wheel drive doesn't do crap on ICE!!!! I had the scariest expereince of my life in a 4-WHEEL DRIVE DURANGO when there was a huge patch of ice on a highway on Christmas Eve (I was visiting family, not working). Even the police car had went into a ditch. And by the way this is the mountains...slide on some ice and you can careen off a cliff....there are not guard rails on a lot of these roads. Anyways our car slid and I almost had a heart attack (cliff on one side of us, 18-wheeler stopped on the other side). Got it stopped and had to wait with all the other cars for an hour for the salt truck to come. Now, there is no way I would try to go to work if the roads are icy like that. Especially if you work at night and it's hard to see icy spots. Yeah my life means more to me than any job. Ice is scary!
  2. by   MrsWampthang
    I live about 40 mile from work. I called off for today (wednesday) because the weather was so bad all day yesterday and I wasn't sure how bad the roads were going to be at 5am this morning. Plus my electricity was off so we had to go sleep at my mother-in-laws last noc. I had picked up the shift today anyway, so it would have been extra. I know it left them extremely short, but I called in 13 hours before my shift, and it will count against my absences, but I just don't care. There are at least 6 people in management that could put their scrubs on and work the floor that live right in the city. These are the ones that won't come out of their precious office to answer lights when the nurses all have 6-7 patients a piece with two aids so parden me if I don't feel badly about leaving them in a bind. The management also has no qualms about getting admits when the staff is already overworked and, of course, they still don't come out of thier offices to help. I know they were wanting to get at least one admit today, and I imagine that they took the patient whether they had the staff or not. Guess I am getting really tired of working understaffed, and having to take patients that shouldn't even be at our facility considering we are a "rehab" facility. I'd go somewhere else, but I found that no place is any better than another so I might as well stay until I get my own business making enough that I can walk away from nursing forever. Sorry, guess I am just burned out right now. And as someone said, keeping myself safe is way more important than trying to get to work and killing myself in the process and being no use to anyone.

    Pam
  3. by   Roy Fokker
    Quote from Christie RN2006
    So I fell asleep at 9am with only 2 inches on the ground and woke up at 6 to over a foot! They are saying that the worst is just now hitting?!?!
    Indeed! I just got done clearing my driveway!

    And not the "whole" driveway either! Just a narrow strip to move my car out onto the street.

    I'm surrounded by banks 4 feet high (at the least) - darned drifts did me in q 2h past 2 nights. It was thanks to foresight of family patriarch (and BACK boning HARD shoveling work in the teeth of non-stop hard blowing wind by most members of the family q 2-4 h) that really saved us from being buried in - unlike 80% of our neighbors.


    I do NOT want to imagine what it was like in the real rural parts of IL!

    Hope you're able to keep your head above the snow!

    cheers,
  4. by   muffie
    i'll be doing just that tonight

    going to work in a snowstorm
  5. by   Christie RN2006
    Quote from Roy Fokker
    Indeed! I just got done clearing my driveway!

    And not the "whole" driveway either! Just a narrow strip to move my car out onto the street.

    I'm surrounded by banks 4 feet high (at the least) - darned drifts did me in q 2h past 2 nights. It was thanks to foresight of family patriarch (and BACK boning HARD shoveling work in the teeth of non-stop hard blowing wind by most members of the family q 2-4 h) that really saved us from being buried in - unlike 80% of our neighbors.


    I do NOT want to imagine what it was like in the real rural parts of IL!

    Hope you're able to keep your head above the snow!

    cheers,
    We ended up with about a foot in a half in the shallow areas. At my house there are drifts that are 3-4 feet high, but I got to see pics of drifts that are 6-7 feet high that make the drifts at my house look like nothing! We had to plow and shovel last night then again this morning just to keep up with it. The piles of snow along our drive are taller than me?!?! I guess the county I live in got the most snow in the whole state of Ohio!

    We couldn't get the doors on the back side of our house open because of the snow, so I had to make my way around the house. Sounds easy enough unless you know what it is like to walk in 1-3 feet of snow, which it sure sounds like you do!!
  6. by   lupin
    Last January I moved from Maine to Tennessee. When I was in Maine I worked as an agency nurse and usually had to travel more than thirty minutes out of my way to get to my assignment. I drove a 4wd car at that time too.
    Snow days were usually my busiest because I would get called in short notice to places because the regular staff would call out. This was a little ridiculous because it snows six months out of the year there. You can't always call out. It isn't fair to the staff getting off nor is it fair to the pts.
    My plan for attack was to leave with a full tank of gas about a half hour before I usually did so I had some time to drive slow. I kept a small survival kit in my trunk which consisted of a special thermal blanket (thanks to my military hubby!), protein bars, bottled water, heat packs that you break and can stuff into your pockets, flares, salt, a small shovel, and a special cell phone wind up device that would provide emergency battery power to y phone to call out. I stuck mostly to the highways and didn't go on backroads. I made sure my cell phone was charged up and I wore cold weather gear until I got to work. They could spare a few minutes for me to change when I got there. I never had to use it, but it was there in case I needed it. Only one time did I refuse an assignment due to weather. An ice storm had hit and the assignment was over an hour and a half away in an isolated area. That one something told me not to take.
    Now I live in eastern Tennessee. A heavy snow here is an inch or more. But I stay prepared here also because they do not have the snow removal equipment here that they did in Maine.
    My point is take it slow, give yourself time, be prepared for problems, and play it safe. If you live in Hawaii and all of a sudden a blizzard blows through then yes you should call out. But if you live in an area where heavy snow or bad weather is common then it's best to adapt and overcome. That's part and parcel of living in such an area.
  7. by   Tweezer93
    As a Nursing Home Administrator, I've taken some time to reflect on this topic after our latest bad storm...

    http://nursinghomeguy.blogspot.com/2...emergency.html

    Our organization excused all absences for a 48 hour period d/t the snow. The bottom line is that our employees are adults, and it must be their decision. I know I was out in the storm picking people up at their houses, and happy to do so. But I would feel horrible the first time I forced someone to come in that voiced concern and something happened.
  8. by   banditrn
    We're having another ice storm here right now - and I have to go in to work tonoc. I'm already dreading it - because of the thought of the call - offs I know I'll have to take care of for tomorrow.
  9. by   midnight 321
    We are required to go in no matter what the weather is like. They recommend that you bring overnight bag and change of clothes with you. Last week I was stuck at work for 3 days r/t hospital calling an internal diaster at 0600. All of the daystaff was present and the night staff had to stay in the event that there was call outs for the night shift. They placed mats on the floor for us to sleep on. Each day they kept the night shift and allowed the day staff to go home. This was the 1st time in the 15 years that I have been here that they had called an internal diaster. Other than practice runs with community fire/EMS .
  10. by   Cat Nurse
    I have worked at the same hospital for close to twenty years, I have lived in the same house for about seventeen years. I have always tried to go to work, I know of two occassions I did not make it. Once when we have about two feet of snow and the city I live in had not plowed my road, I live on a dead end. The most recent was the ICE Storm of 2005. We had no electricity for 6 days. The problem was the falling trees and power lines. This past blizzard I packed a bag and stayed all night. I had about 20 hrs of overtime. The thing that upsets me is the people that don't make any attempt to get to work. Yes, I don't have children at home, my husband was in California, so I only had a cat at home. But, these people have no commitment to the job, the patients or their co-workers. Yes, they need to be smart about traveling. The hospital offered to go get a few people, but they had reasons they could not come to work. People called in sick, sick chil, then called and told us how much fun they had sleding. The thing that upsets me is that the absences are going to be excused!! What about the people who showed up?:stone
  11. by   Overland1
    Quote from Cat Nurse
    I have worked at the same hospital for close to twenty years, I have lived in the same house for about seventeen years. I have always tried to go to work, I know of two occassions I did not make it. Once when we have about two feet of snow and the city I live in had not plowed my road, I live on a dead end. The most recent was the ICE Storm of 2005. We had no electricity for 6 days. The problem was the falling trees and power lines. This past blizzard I packed a bag and stayed all night. I had about 20 hrs of overtime. The thing that upsets me is the people that don't make any attempt to get to work. Yes, I don't have children at home, my husband was in California, so I only had a cat at home. But, these people have no commitment to the job, the patients or their co-workers. Yes, they need to be smart about traveling. The hospital offered to go get a few people, but they had reasons they could not come to work. People called in sick, sick chil, then called and told us how much fun they had sleding. The thing that upsets me is that the absences are going to be excused!! What about the people who showed up?:stone
    There are always a few who abuse the "calling in" (calling out???) thing; fortunately, they are but a very small percentage of those of us. We should always make a reasonable effort to get to work. If unable to get to work (for whatever reason), what would be wrong with "swapping" with whoever covered for us? That was the unwritten agreement in the ICU where I used to work. Even back when all I had was a 2WD vehicle, I always made it to work, even when work was a hundred miles away; must be part of the work ethic, I guess. Because I have owned a 4WD (Jeep, Jeep! ) vehicle for the past eleven years or so, I probably have no excuse for not getting in to work. I also am fussy about keeping my driveway clear during the winter season so that I can get out easily. The shaving kit is kept in the Jeep for "just in case", and I occasionally carry a change of clothes for the rare occasion that I may have to stay over.

    During the last snow storm (~2 feet), several of us with 4WD vehicles provided rides to and from the hospital for those who could not otherwise get in. We had a bunch of people from all departments who just jumped into the project and made it happen. The nearby counties (along with ours) had travel advisories in effect and would not bother anybody who had to drive to/from work. As for safety, people were generally very careful and allowed extra time to travel to and from work. All told, we were not missing anybody due to the snow storm, and all were returned home in a safe manner.

    Oh, how I long for summer (and those evenings when I will be able to ride the motorcycle to work) weather, although we have not had as much snow this season as during some of the past winters!
  12. by   flashpoint
    Quote from Jerry Falletta
    There are always a few who abuse the "calling in" (calling out???) thing;

    Yup, "calling in." Maybe it's a regional thing...when I worked in Oregon, everyone "called off"...some places say "called out," some places say "called in." I guess it's kinda like the soda, pop, soda pop, Coke thing.




    Back on topic...I live about 30 miles from work...20 miles if I take country roads, which I don't, so... About a week before Chirstmas, we had our major nasty snowstorm...60 MPH winds, 16 inches of snow, temps below 0. Another nurse who lives down the street from me called in saying she wasn't coming to work because she didn't want to be stuck there for three days. When she called in, it hadn't even started snowing yet. I slept most of the day and went in at 2:00 PM (shift starts at 6:00 PM) with the intention of letting her leave early, so she could get home while it was still light out. The roads were pretty clear (60 MPH winds), but visibility was lousy. Still, I made it there in about 45 minutes. Another nurse and I covered the floor for three days...not a lot of fun, but we got the job done.

    The nurse who called in and a CNA who lives in the same town as I do were terminated for not coming in. If I hadn't made it in, they probably wouldn't have terminated anyone, but they felt that if one of us could make it, all of us should have been able to (I called the CNA to see if she wanted to ride with me, but she never picked up)...not really fair, but I see their point.

    I knew when I took the job that there would be times that I would be stuck at work because of the weather...I plan for this and keep a change of clothes and things like toothpaste, soap, shampoo, etc in my car. I don't like driving in the bad weather, but I plan ahead, leave early, and take my time. I have driven in snow, ice, rain, wind, dust...just a consequence of working 30 miles from home.
  13. by   cisco
    I commuted for 10 years when it took 1 1/2 hours during winter to get to work. I came in many times with the snow blowing drifts across the road and white outs where you couldn't even see where you were going. It was a miracle sometimes that I even made it in. Then once I had to cross over a huge bump at the end of my dirt road made by the snowplow on the main hwy. I got stuck bad, had to walk home, wake my husband who helped me shovel the car out. As I was starting to drive to work I noticed the car was handling funny, I got out to find I had a flat. The shovel had accidently gone through the tire. I got to a gas station to have the tire fixed, called into work and they didn't believe me and gave me crap about it. I got into work late that day and they still gave me a hard time even after all the years I did make it in on horrible days. After that, I stopped going into work when the weather was bad and dangerous. I belief now is to make the trek to work when I think it's safe, otherwise I stay home and call in and don't listen to their intimidating comments. To me it's not worth risking your life especially when it's not even appreciated by management.

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