With a summer heat wave gripping most of the country right now, keeping cool seems to be everyone’s #1 priority. Obviously, employees who work outdoors or in confined spaces with limited cooling or air conditioning are at the greatest risk for heat-related illnesses.
OSHA requires employers to provide a safe and healthy work environment for all employees. When the sun is blaring and the temperatures are nearing the triple digits, protect your workers from heat stroke and other extreme temperature hazards by following these precautions:
• Provide shelter from the sun and allow employees to take regular cool-down breaks
• Make sure water is readily available and allow employees to drink throughout the day
• Know the symptoms of heat-related illnesses, including:
=> High body temperature
=> Lack of sweating, although skin may be hot red or flushed and dry skin
=> Rapid pulse
=> Difficulty breathing
=> Irrational or strange behavior, including hallucinations, disorientation. agitation or confusion
• Keep first aid supplies on-hand at all job sites. For heat related illnesses, this would include ample water or sports drinks, a shower or hose for emergency cool-downs, a shaded or air-conditioned area for recovery, and a working telephone to summon 911.
• Educate employees on the dangers of soaring temperatures with G.Neil’s Extreme Heat Exposure Kit, which includes a poster, tip sheet and 20 takeaway notifications