Working in the heat, can be deadly!
Beat the Heat! If you work outdoors, then you know, in some areas, the summer heat can be brutal! With temperatures reaching 100+ in the shade, workers need to keep safety in mind. Heat stress and heat stroke can cause life altering effects or even death!
If you work in the heat there are several simple steps you can use to help keep you safe:
- Look Before You Leap! It can take up to 5 days of working 1 ½ hours per day for your body to acclimate to the heat. If you’re not accustomed to working in the heat, ease into it gradually.
- Dress for Success. Light colored and light weight clothing will reflect the heat and sunlight.
- Keep Your Cool. Wear a hat or sun visor to protect your noggin. Drape a lightweight rag or towel over the back of your neck or wear a hat with a folding neck flap, specifically made for working in the heat. QC Supply offers a Sunblock cap that is ideal for working in the sun and hot weather. http://www.qcsupply.com/79203-sunblock-cap-with-folding-neck-flap.html
- The Heat’s Going To Hit The Fan. Keep the air moving if possible. Cooling and misting fans will help keep your workplace cooler, whether you’re in a warehouse, loading dock, agricultural environment or anywhere else the air stands still.
- Take a Break! Take frequent cool off breaks. Either get in the shade or go indoors to get out of the heat.
- Snack Time. While working in the heat, eat small meals or snacks. Do not over eat.
- Water World. Drink plenty of H20. Your body will need fluids to help keep it cool. While working in the heat, drink fluids about every 15 minutes, even if you are not thirsty. Your urine should be clear and if it is not, you may be dehydrating.
- Friends, Family & Co-Workers. Keep an eye on your co-workers. If someone is feeling dizzy, light-headed, has a headache or is short of breath, these are all signs of heat stress or heat stroke. Help them to cool off and call for help.
- The Doctor is In. If you’re taking medicine, check with your doctor to find out if there are any adverse side effects to being in the heat, before you go out and work all day.
- The Early Bird Gets the Worm. If the forecast is telling you the heat index is going to be brutal, start your day early in the morning when the temperatures are typically cooler.
In the United States, almost 200 people die each year, due to heat related issues. Heat stress will not only put your health at risk, it can also affect others around you as your ability to do your job safely diminishes. Keep Cool, Keep Safe!