General discussion

  • Creator
  • #2249171

    Winter weather


    by zlitocook ·

    The first bad winter storm is here in St Louis, we have two inches of ice and expect six to nine inches of snow by Friday morning.
    What would keep your IT people from coming in to the office?
    We have an 800 number to call to see if the weather is too bad to try to make it in but I question how this is done.
    Is there a person who decides if it is ok to drive in to work? And how do they decide, where are they driving from and what do they use as a deciding point?
    If I live in a part of the city that is not plowed or salted and the person lives blocks away will their decision make me drive in?
    What are your winter weather policies?

All Comments

  • Author
    • #3287983

      Someone in management is designated

      by jamesrl ·

      In reply to Winter weather

      In our office, the director with the largest staff, the call centre, is the one who makes the call. Generally if the local transit is running, the office will be open – the office is a short walk from the subway.

      In my department, we have people who have the option of working from home on occasion. If the weather is bad, we suggest they take their laptop home in anticipation. During the recent weather challenges in Vancouver, both my staff there worked at home till the roads were clear and the water safe to drink.

      We too employ a number to dial in to check the status.


    • #3287886

      We NEVER close for weather

      by dmambo ·

      In reply to Winter weather

      Most of the factory are hourly workers and they miss pay if the plant shuts down. There are some days when absence is not counted against those that miss a “snow day”, but those days are rare and are generally declared after the fact.

      I’ve been here 9 years and haven’t missed a day because of weather yet. I believe that’s the same for most employees here. It’s Vermont, which means snow and hills, but half or more of the people have 4WD or AWD vehicles. And the town road crew is equipped to handle the mess.

    • #3287875

      I’m in St. Louis too.

      by mmarble ·

      In reply to Winter weather

      We may not have the worst winter weather in the country, but our city is one of the least prepared when it hits. We are consistently ranked either 2 or 3 for worst kept roads in the US. Even the snow routes aren’t typically clear until 10 am. The top manager makes the decision whether or not we’re open, but you always have the option to take a vacation day if you don’t want to risk it. We have no official way of letting employees know that we’re closed because we’re city government and not communicating is our speciality. Luckily our IT dept has one staff member within walking distance. So far, so good; nothing has come up that couldn’t be taken care of remotely. Watch out for those car eating potholes and disappearing right lanes!

      • #3287794

        I can work by remote

        by zlitocook ·

        In reply to I’m in St. Louis too.

        But if the power is off or the lines are down that will not help. As for the disappearing lanes I don?t know about other cities but we have the most discourteous drivers. Ether in lane restrictions because of construction or people jumping four lanes to get ahead of traffic, the city needs a better way to move traffic! Wait for the construction on high way 40, it will be a night mare.
        Ha-ha pot holes here just get bigger or they over patch and you get speed bumps. 🙂

        • #3225505

          St. Louis roads cont.

          by mmarble ·

          In reply to I can work by remote

          You have to drive Hwy 40? My condolences. Don’t you love it when all of a sudden the road starts undulating (even though it was recently paved) and you think there’s something wrong with your car? Our programmer is from a 3rd world country and he says their roads our better than ours!

        • #2501579

          Ya’ll THINK St. Louis is bad?….come try

          by btljooz ·

          In reply to St. Louis roads cont.

          KANSAS CITY!!! 😉

          It’s NOT just St. Louis, it’s the WHOLE state of Misery! I learned this back in the late 80s and very early 90s while I was banging my head on the pavement of this country as an Over The Road truck driver hauling “Piggy-backs”. …You’ve seen the truck-tracters going down the road stacked ‘piggy-back’ style like a train? THAT’S what I delivered within ALL the lower 48.

          That’s what taught me that, “When there’s snow, you go SLOW; …when there’s ICE, it’s NO DICE!!!”

      • #3225468

        Weather…Part of Growing COOP Planning

        by anthony.m.dimattia ·

        In reply to I’m in St. Louis too.

        Weather is just one of many contingencies organizations should plan to address. Our technical and support staff live throughout the Bi-State area in all directions. Fortunately our ability to operate remotely has grown with our move towards ?enterprise” architecture. This allows us to address the majority of critical IT reactions during weather as well as other emergencies. Our local commander makes the call based upon mission and all the other factors. A local number is called with an announcement regarding closure, delayed work day or other critical information. Information is also posted to local media outlets. Safety of personnel is always a primary factor.

    • #3225544

      is the job worth your life?

      by a contractor ·

      In reply to Winter weather

      Up in here in Minnesota, I don;’t care what company policy is. If I feel my life is in jeporardy, I stay home. And we know how to drive in that kind of weather. You people have no clue how to drive in that curd.

      Also, with all the power that was out, etc. who is going to that care of your house, pipes, restarting the furnace , etc.

      Take the long term view. Better to be off 1-2 days and be there afterwards than to be a statistic.

    • #3225529

      That’s why it’s portable!

      by rogiem ·

      In reply to Winter weather

      I live in Northern Ontario Canada. I’ve seen my share of bad weather, power outages and minus 40 days that crack the telephone poles. If your job is the “Get it done by a deadline” type then your employer should supply you with the tools to do that. i.e a laptop and the best connection you can get. Unfortunately I live in a rural area, the best I can get is dial-up, but I do have the laptop and it comes home with me every night in the winter.

      Minnestota makes a good point about deciding what’s important. Your employer benefits from your sound decisions, if you make it in and you spend your day worried about pipes freezing and the drive home, how effective are you going to be at work!

    • #3225522

      It’s Your Life and Your Decision

      by jjloven ·

      In reply to Winter weather

      I live in Wisconsin. It does not matter where you live, there is no company that can decide for you if it is safe to drive to work or not. The person doing the driving has the responsibility for their life and safety, not a company.

    • #3225512

      I am designated

      by tonythetiger ·

      In reply to Winter weather

      an “Emergency Essential Employee” and I must go to work even if local authorities declare a weather emergency and order people off the roads unless, of course, it is physically impossible (I was late once because of a surprise 30″ snowfall… took me 5 hours to dig out my 70′ driveway).

      • #3225477

        5 Hours

        by now left tr ·

        In reply to I am designated

        Why did you bother, by the time you got in the day would be over, no?

    • #3225485

      I am the IT

      by tom ·

      In reply to Winter weather

      I am the IT guy for a small company, and I rarely miss work due to weather. Of course living in Seattle we rarely see snowy weather like many of you. And, of course, being from Montana, I’ve got that Montana bull-headedness and pride that won’t let snow slow me down. Our company has a definite policy of “stay home if you think you should”.

    • #3225483


      by dr_zinj ·

      In reply to Winter weather

      We have a company policy that has the Administrator-on-call deciding whether to allow non-essential personnel to leave work, or stay at home. Doing so means a cost impact of a third of a million dollars per day to the organization; so it’s not decided on lightly.

      For me, it’s a personal decision. No job is worth my life. The decision process is also simple.

      I elect to call in as a stay at home if:

      1. I walk outside and immediately fall on my ass on the ice.

      2. The ice is so thick that I can’t get the door open.

      3. The ice is so bad I lose traction and the car slides back into the garage.

      4. The snow is higher than the axles on my car. (Means it’ll plug the air dams too.)

      5. It rains so hard that it washes out the culverts on the driveway. (Did that on the Mother’s Day flood.)

      6. The windstorm knocks trees down in the driveway and road requiring me to take out my chainsaw to clear a path.

      Note that some of these things may only delay my arrival at work, depending on whether it’s only my driveway (1/4 of a mile long), or the roads themselves.

      • #3225459

        I agree as well

        by j_most ·

        In reply to Depends

        It doesn’t matter what they say (with the exception of the emergency employee as stated earlier) you have to make the decision for yourself.

        I learned that lesson while working in NYC years ago. The snow came later in the morning and they would not make a decision to close, so I left on my own. Good thing I left when I did because the trains stopped running after 3:00 because the weather was so bad. I would have been stuck in NYC for another 5 hrs until they could get trains running again.

        So from then on I decided that i’ll make the decision myself.

      • #3225452

        Weather Emergency Declaired?

        by dmont ·

        In reply to Depends

        Basically, if a weather emergency has not been declaired;, employees are expected to come in to work or in anticipation of the bad weather take home laptops and remote in. This isn’t high school anymore it is a job.

        • #3225316

          Remote access

          by j_most ·

          In reply to Weather Emergency Declaired?

          I don’t think anyone can argue the point of remote access and working from home. If it keeps you in the safety of your house during bad weather instead of braving the rough roads, etc than it should be envouraged.

    • #3225389


      by pj8089 ·

      In reply to Winter weather

      Actually that is a question each individual has to make… on his own, no matter who “officially” makes it.
      I went to work, it was raining. Worked the midnight shift, No problem. lived 3 miles from the plant. Started to snow at 3:30 a.m. (I got off work at 7 ! No problem… I was there sleeping on a desk for 3 days !! That was the blizzard of 78 in Ohio !

    • #3289530

      This is a 24 hour shop

      by breadtrk ·

      In reply to Winter weather

      The poor buggar that is at work when the bad stuff hits gets to stay. In Nashville we don’t often get much but when we do, the roads are blocked, not by trees or poles but by the boneheads that live here that can’t drive. Same thing when it rains.

      I’m a Jeeping Geek and look foward to snow or anything else Mom Nature can throw at me, I’m in.

    • #2502869

      I always get to these things late for some reason………

      by rclark2 ·

      In reply to Winter weather

      I work at a hospital. We have to be open even if every thing else is closed. So we have a policy of everyone all the time. The worse it is, the more we need them.

      That being said, we look to the employee safety as the overriding factor. We will send the police to get you if you can’t come in on your own. Employee’s that have 4wd can and do go get the employee’s that have no way of going.

      Key personnel, charge nurses, administrators etc.

      As for me, I’m in software development. With the exception of problems that need to be taken care of, anytime the white stuff is on the ground and school is out, I will be at home on the 4 wheeler or the dune buggy, pulling a plastic sled with screaming kids hollering “GO FASTER!”

      Life is what you make it, and I choose to take vacation days on those days. Enjoy adversity when you can.

    • #2503092

      We had this same storm

      by gsg ·

      In reply to Winter weather

      I planned for it and scheduled 2 days off. We live in the Ozark Mountains, and it’s taking your life into your hands to come in. Usually, everyone is responsible and either schedules the time, or, we work it out between us that someone stays over, either in a hotel or a free patient bed. The nursing staff do the same thing. The local hotels give us discounts and if our patient census is down, we use a bed, and when we’re done, strip it and take the linens to the laundry. We report the room to housekeeping, and they re-make the bed.

Viewing 12 reply threads