I am a new grad, and my first day off of orientation is tomorrow... and we are set to get 2+ feet of snow in an area that only sees that much snow once every 15 or so years. While I've been in the healthcare setting for quite some time, I've never experienced a snow quite like this during my career. I understand my responsibility to work, but I also want to keep in mind my safety out on the roads (I have a 35 mile drive to the hospital). At what point do you decide that you just can't make it into work? Do you always attempt to make it in, or do you look out the window and make that decision?
Disclaimer: I am a team player, and understand that if I call out, that means our unit runs short. I'm interested in hearing when to draw the line.
Ask your employer what weather contingency plans they have for employees. Do they have rooms for you to sleep in, food to eat, et cetera? Most hospitals have emergency plans for personnel housing in an emergency, whether it's empty patient rooms, on call rooms etc, free food in the cafeteria, whatever.
Also, make sure you close up your house tight, turn off all water and purge pipes. Then grab clothing changes enough for 3 or 4 days. Pack enough dry food and water for 3 -4 days, have extra batteries, 2 flashlights, blanket, thermal clothing, charged cell phone with car charger, full tank of gas, shovel, snow chains.
Then go to work. The food and water is if you yourself are stranded on the road with no help. Also, since you're a new grad, if you could make it, I would suggest that you do. That will show you to be a dedicated player willing to put up with hardship for the team.
*** Sidebar *** I got trapped at work for three days once. When I went back out to look for my car, it was buried under 8 feet of show. Half of it was mother nature, the rest was city sanitation, whose show blowers opened the roads by blowing the snow onto parked cars. It took me and a few helpful colleagues, more than 6 hours to dig myself out.
Last edit by Emergency RN on Dec 19, '09