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24May 2022

6 Ways to Beat Heat Illness – Just in Time for Summer

With summer around the corner, are your clients prepared?

Each year thousands of workers across the nation become ill when exposed to excessive heat. Approximately 50 to 70 percent of heat illness cases happen during the first few days of working in warm or hot weather. Some examples of heat illness include heat stroke, heat exhaustion, and heat rash.

Heavy activity, lack of time to adjust to the new conditions, or wearing clothes that hold in body heat can increase the risk, but heat illness is preventable. If you have employees who work outdoors, here are some things you need to provide to help protect them from heat illness:

  1. Plenty of drinking water

For proper hydration, plan to provide one quart of water per hour for each employee. More importantly, encourage your employees to drink it.

  1. Plenty of shade

Employees are allowed and encouraged to take a cool-down rest period whenever they need one.

  1. An emergency plan

If an employee displays symptoms of heat illness, they need help right away. Coworkers should be ready to act immediately.

  1. A plan to help your employees adjust to the conditions

It can take up to 14 days for workers to adjust to the heat and it is important to train employees on how to do that.

During a heat wave, monitor all employees—especially new staff, those returning from extended leave, and those moving to the area from a cooler climate.

  1. Heat illness prevention training

If there is a risk of heat illness, all employees must be trained before they begin working. The training needs to be specific to your heat illness plan and procedures.

  1. A written heat illness prevention plan

Having a heat illness prevention plan is not only important for the health of your employee; it’s also required by law. The plan must be in writing in both English and the language understood by the majority of your employees.

 

Read more about preventing heat illness by visiting SafeAtWork.CA.com.

Injury prevention is a powerful tool that’s beneficial to every employer. State Fund’s Injury and Illness Prevention Program – or IIPP for short – can help your client build an IIPP fast, easy, and free. To help you share this important resource, we’re providing the IIPP Builder link with every bound quote and payment confirmation email.

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