Now is the time to plan on who will be providing commercial snow removal and ice management for your property during winter weather months.
Snow and ice events can become major hazards on your property if you don’t have the right provider managing them. Your property can become a costly statistic due to slip-and-fall incidents, which are one of the most prevalent injuries and liability concerns on commercial and industrial properties.
Don’t wait until the last minute to find the right partner. You’ll want to give yourself plenty of time to work out a strategy to maintain your property before the first snowfall arrives.
This will provide both parties ample time to discuss high-priority areas like entrances and exits, walkways, parking, and traffic patterns. It also takes the guesswork out of where to properly move the snow and to plan for the possibility of snow hauling offsite for larger snow events.
Here are some tips on how to choose the best commercial snow removal company in the Northeast for your property.
What Kind of Experience Do They Have in Commercial Snow Removal?
Snow removal is a profession that sees an influx of new providers every year, and these new companies often disappear during or shortly after the season, leaving clients scrambling to find a new provider.
Plowing snow needs extensive training in order to perform the services properly, safely, and without causing damage to your property. When vetting snow removal companies, it is important to confirm a provider has the equipment and labor necessary to not only handle your property, but multiple similarly sized properties as well. The right partner should be able to provide a comprehensive safety and training program along with references from another facility manager for comparably sized properties. BACK TO TOP
Do They Have the Appropriate Insurance?
Your commercial snow and ice removal contractor will be performing high-risk services in inclement weather. If a service provider isn’t properly insured – they should immediately be disqualified. An underinsured provider will create inevitable risk for your company, your staff, and your visitors.
Your provider should be able to have insurance limits equal to or greater than the following:
Commercial General Liability coverage of at least $1,000,000 per incident and $2,000,000 overall.
Commercial Auto Liability with a combined single limit of at least $1,000,000. Some smaller companies believe that their personal vehicle insurance covers them adequately. If they use a personal car to do business, however, their personal insurance coverage will not protect them in the case of an incident.
If they do not have Workers Compensation Insurance of at least $500,000, you may be held responsible if something goes wrong.
Commercial Umbrella Liability coverage of at least $1,000,000. This will cover any larger claims in any of these situations.
A customer can request a certificate of insurance, which can then be sent to them to keep in their files as proof that the contractor is properly insured.
Snow and ice events naturally create unsafe conditions. Cold temperatures mixed with working at night and limited visibility create the ‘perfect storm’ for an accident if the machine operator or plow truck driver doesn’t follow safe operating procedures on your job site.
A responsible and reliable company will properly train its staff on how to navigate through snow and ice, stay warm, avoid accidents, and wear the appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE). Additionally, training for removal of snow and ice for pedestrians’ walkways or blacktop is a high priority for our teams. Ensuring we have the proper equipment, materials, and procedures to police these areas to mitigate any slip and fall issues. It is our job to provide a clean and safe site that can allow employees to get to work.
Make sure that your prospective provider makes safety one of its highest priorities. They should have stellar safety records and have a focused plan on how to keep your property as safe as possible during the winter months. BACK TO TOP
How Many Snow Professionals Do They Employ?
In the Northeastern Region, it’s not uncommon for snow to fall nonstop for more than 24 hours. If your provider does not have enough personnel working in shifts to operate snow removal equipment their employees can become fatigued, putting your staff and visitors at risk of a serious safety incident.
Overtime work is risky, and temporarily shutting down operations may imply they won’t be able to meet their responsibilities. This can impact the logistical operation of your facility by preventing vehicles from coming and going. A minimum of two people working in 12-hour shift intervals per piece of equipment is recommended, with more to cover emergencies, sickness, or other staffing problems.
Do They Deliver The Services You’re Looking For?
Some companies, like Evercor, provide full-service commercial snow and ice removal. This service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and is the ideal alternative for property owners or facility managers looking for a proactive and responsive solution. This service will need to have the client’s property monitored on a consistent basis by your provider.
Inquire about the service provider’s monitoring procedures if you’re contemplating this type of service. What is the frequency with which they inspect the property? How do they keep track of everything? What precisely are they on the lookout for? Do they apply a pre-treatment to the surfaces? Do they have 24/7 access to rock salt or other de-icing products? Do they own their own equipment?
We now provide service to over 130 commercial, industrial, fulfillment, distribution, and logistics centers, totaling over 52 million square feet of parking and 2 million square feet of sidewalk. We've put in the right people, procedures, and policies, and we've got cutting-edge weather reporting and snow equipment to back it up.
One of your first concerns should be response time, meaning how fast the snow removal contractor will arrive at your location once it snows. When a snow event starts, see how quickly the snow plowing services will begin working on your property. The average response time is usually between one and three hours depending on the weather conditions. Top snow removal companies will arrive on-site before the snow even falls to prepare logistics and address key areas on site. BACK TO TOP
What Kind of Commercial Snow Removal Equipment Do They Operate?
Given the unpredictable nature of snowstorms, the company you choose must be prepared at all times. They won’t be able to get to your location in a timely manner if their equipment is out of service or not left on-site throughout the winter season. Get the assurance that their equipment is operational and in excellent working order.
To clear your property, they should utilize high-quality, industrial-grade machinery and accessories. Any snow management company that’s serious about safety and efficiency should be examining its equipment on a daily basis to verify that it is in good operating order. They should also have backup machines in case there is an issue, so you are not left in a terrible scenario without a provider.
You want a commercial snow removal company that can handle any situation and has the resources needed to not only handle small snow events but can perform at a high level in blizzard conditions.
What If You Require Services That Are Outside The Scope of General Snow & Ice Management?
General snow and ice management is often sufficient for most sites, but it’s helpful to know if your service provider can assist you in the event that a unique service is required.
Is it possible for them to relocate or remove snow piles from the property if necessary? Do they have access to tri-axle dump trucks for a snow hauling or relocation request? When larger snow piles encroach on driving and parking areas, they may need to be pushed further back or moved entirely. Large snow piles are dense, and certain types of smaller equipment may be unable to handle moving them.
On larger commercial properties, snow hauling takes a lot of resources to accomplish the task at hand. The majority of small service providers lack the necessary internal resources to tackle this. If left unaddressed these piles can create a serious runoff hazard, leaving pedestrians vulnerable to slip and falls.
Voted Best Places To Work | Snow & Ice Management Association (SIMA) | 2021
Evercor Facility Management has been nationally recognized by SIMA as the best place to work in snow, consecutively. Our employees understand what it takes to create a safe environment that reduces your overall liability risk while keeping your facilities open and inviting throughout the winter.
Do They Properly Track Their Equipment and Employees?
You need to hire a company that can show proof of when and what kind of snow and ice management services were completed,
The easiest method to keep track of this is to hire a commercial snow and ice removal company with GPS-equipped equipment. This type of technology will keep track of where the equipment is, when it arrived, and when it departs the property.
A lot of providers also use an additional layer of surveillance, like dash-cams, to assure the property is being adequately maintained.
Top-tier snow and ice management companies provide detailed monthly reports that show you exactly what you’re paying for and when those services were performed. BACK TO TOP
Hire a Trusted Snow and Ice Removal Company
Having a trusted snow and ice management partner is crucial for any facility. Working with a company that focuses on quality, turnaround times, and safety is essential for keeping your facility up and running.
Hand labor is available for cleaning pathways and staircases, as well as the use of heavy machinery and a fleet of trucks for roadways. We inspect our equipment before it arrives at your job site and keep it in good working order to ensure we can meet the scope of services requested. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.
Hand labor is available for cleaning pathways and staircases, as well as the use of machinery and spreader trucks for roadways. We examine all of our equipment before it arrives at your Jobsite and keep it in great working order. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.