We are in the midst of the dog days of summer and staying cool is on the top of everyone’s mind. It is the perfect time of the year to take a dip in a pool or relax in the air conditioning. But many of us have to work during August, so we must keep cool while on the job.
It isn’t difficult to imagine a scenario where workers will be dealing with extreme heat this time of year. When a person is exposed to a hot environment, his/her body must find a way to release the heat. If this heat isn’t released, workers can experience some serious side effects.
Workers that are more likely to be affected by heat related illness are those who are 65 years of age or older, are overweight or take medications that may cause an adverse reaction to excessive heat. Of course, this does not mean that if these do not apply to you that you are safe from heat related illness.
Heat related illnesses are a significant concern in the workplace and it is important that we take the appropriate steps in order to mitigate the risk.
Extreme heat should be avoided whenever possible. If exposure cannot be avoided, employers should: