As temperatures begin to rise with the change in seasons, you need to take the higher heat into consideration when trying to stay safe on the job. Getting too hot can both affect your job performance and your health, so there’s really no excuse to not protect yourself from the sun and heat.
If your job involves working in a climate-controlled office all day, you probably don’t have to worry too much about changing your safety habits. However, air conditioning systems do break down and power outages can occur.
Outdoor workers are the ones that have to change their habits the most. people working outdoors in the early summer may have more problems with heat than they will later in the summer. According to a Washington Post article, our bodies get used to the heat over time.
Different people become accustomed to the heat after different lengths of time. Young, healthy people who get exposed to hot weather gradually tend to be acclimatized after about 14 days. Those who are not don’t exercise regularly and who are not in good shape tend to take longer to adapt.
Summer safety basics
While you should already be drinking water regularly throughout the day, staying hydrated during the summer months is essential. It’s also important to take regular breaks and get out of extreme heat whenever possible. It also helps to limit caffeine and alcohol intake, even outside of work.
As noted above, it helps to gradually acclimate yourself to hot conditions. During the first week of hot weather, take extra care to avoid too much exertion. Slowly increase your workload during that first week.
Be conscious of the clothes you wear to work. Lightweight, light-colored and athletic clothing can help keep you cool and wick away perspiration.
Know the warning signs
Being knowledgeable about heat-related illness can help keep you safe as well as those around you.
Marked by redness, itchiness and pain, sunburn is easy to spot. In extreme cases, it can cause swelling, blisters and headaches. Topical ointments and getting out of the sun can help ease the symptoms of sunburn.
Heat cramps are painful muscle spasms that generally occur in the legs and abdomen. They are often accompanied by heavy sweating. Putting pressure on heat cramps, hydrating and a gentle massage are effective ways to treat the conditions. If nausea develops, the person should stop drinking water.
Heavy perspiration, lack of strength, clammy skin, erratic heartbeat, fainting and vomiting are all associated with heat exhaustion. Someone suffering from the condition might have a normal body temperature.
Get someone showing signs of heat exhaustion out of the sun right away. As soon as they are inside, the person should lie down and her or his clothing should be loosened. Cool, wet cloths, sips of water and air conditioning can help to relieve symptoms. If vomiting occurs, stop giving water and seek medical attention.
Heat stroke is marked by a body temperature of greater than 106 degrees Fahrenheit, dry skin, rapid pulse and even unconsciousness. Someone with these symptoms should be taken to a medical facility as soon as possible.
Are you looking for a new job?
At Quanta, safety is our top priority and we support all the safety measures our clients put in place. If you are looking for work this summer, please contact us to find out how we can help or explore these open jobs, here.