Severe Weather Policy

Severe weather covers conditions such as snow, ice, fog, floods which render extremely hazardous journeys by foot, road, or public transport.

Outings – if I feel a child might be endangered by going out in the car, we will not go; if I feel a child might be endangered by going out on foot, we will not go. If this means a child missing school, I will make every effort to contact the school and the child’s parents for advice.

If we are on a walking outing and the weather conditions deteriorate, I will make every effort to get home safely.

If this seems impossible, I will take the children with me to a friend’s house (if we are walking, we will be local and I have lots of friends locally who are usually in during the day) or to a public indoor area and make every effort to contact parents from there to reassure them we are safe.

If we are on a car outing and the weather conditions deteriorate, I will stop when it is safe to do so and take advice from the emergency services. I will not leave children alone and I will protect them as much as possible from the effects of the weather by carrying blankets, coats, drinks, snacks etc in the car.

Collecting children – as I live 10 minutes walk away from the school, adverse weather will not prevent me from collecting your child.

Heating – if my heating goes off during inclement weather conditions, I will make every effort to contact parents for them to come urgently to collect their children if the indoor temperature drops below a safe level. If parents cannot be contacted I will follow my emergency procedure. I will make sure children are kept safe.

Clothes – if children do not arrive in suitable clothes for outdoor play, we will have to stay inside. This is in direct contravention of the EYFS, which states that I must allow children free access to the outside area every day. Parents need to pack gloves, scarves, hats, wellingtons, waterproof coats and spare clothes.

My drive – my drive might be slippery, which would cause users to fall. I will do everything in my power to keep it safe for use by salting it in the morning. However, I cannot go outside to salt it if I am also looking after children, so it might get slippery through the day. I recommend parents wear suitable footwear and take extra care.

Weather forecast – if the forecast deteriorates during the day, I will make a decision based on the children’s safety about whether or not they go outside. In some situations, for example if I feel the wind chill factor will hurt their skin, we will stay inside.

Police advice – if the police advise against going outside, or driving, then I will follow what they say. This might mean I cannot take children on pre-organised appointments or drop them at school etc. I will make every effort to keep in touch with parents and other settings as appropriate.

Closing – if advised by police or other bodies, I will have to close my childminding setting. I will follow advice and make every effort to keep parents up-to-date at all times.

Late arrival of parents – if parents are delayed by inclement weather, they must inform me as soon as possible and keep me updated about their journey. Their child will be kept safe and reassured during this time.

Electricity – if my electric goes off, my house phone will stop working. My heating and hot water is powered by gas. I have a mobile phone which is on me at all times

Hypothermia – when playing outside with children, I will make sure they wear appropriate clothing to keep them warm and encourage them to keep moving around. If I do not consider it is safe to go out with the children, we will stay indoors.  If a child appears to be reacting to the cold (blue lips, uncontrollable shivering etc) I will bring them inside, warm them up gently using hot drinks and blankets and seek medical advice. I will make every effort to contact parents as soon as the child’s condition has stabilised – the child must be my first priority.

Footwear – if children’s shoes / boots do not have soles suitable for severe weather conditions, they might fall more than usual during outings, garden play etc. Parents are responsible for ensuring children’s footwear is suitable for the weather conditions. If a child has an accident, I will follow my accident policy.

Policy Created 11.2.18

Review Date 31.12.18