Dehydration and exposure to high temperatures for long periods of time can cause heat illness. Outdoor workers, miners, construction workers, transportation workers, utility workers, landscapers, farmers, boiler room workers, and fire fighters are most at risk for heat stress, especially in hot weather why high humidity. Heavy sweating, fatigue, fainting, nausea, headache are all symptoms of heat illness. Every year, thousands of people get sick due to heat stress. Through exposure to high temperatures, human internal temperatures rise and can cause heat rash, heat cramps, heat stress, or many more dangerous conditions that require emergency medical attention. To prevent heat illness workplaces should have a heat illness prevention program and should provide water, shady spaces to rest, breaks, a schedule that involves rotating work, and training/education for all employees. Heavy advanced equipment can be used at wear houses, distribution centers, manufacturing plants, and food/beverage facilities to reduce or eliminate heat stress. OSHA and the CDC stress avoiding heat stroke in external and internal environments. Training and educating employees will help to reduce heat incidents at the workplace.
- Methods for Preventing Heat Illness:
- Drink water every 20 minutes, even if you are not thirsty.
- If you feel light-headed, stop working immediately and take a break in a cooler area.
- Wear light color clothing and a light hat in the summer.
- Take periodic rest in shady areas.
- Stay cool to the best of your ability.
- Do not drink alcohol, as it will increase your risk of dehydration.
- If you must stand for a long time take time to stretch your leg muscles.
- If possible, schedule your work for cooler times of the day.
Participate in all training.