Here in Georgia, many school children have gone back to school, marking the “end of summer.” Unfortunately, just because children have gone back to school it does not mark the end of the heat associated with the time of year. As I drive around and see workers outside I often feel for them because I know how miserable working in the heat can be. As an employer, if you have workers who are performing work outside, or you have a plant that is not airconditioned, you have an obligation to keep your workers protected from problems with the heat. Next week is OSHA’s Safe and Sound Week. On their website, they offer tips that every employer should be aware of in order to protect workers, either inside or outside, from heat-related problems.
OSHA has a webpage that offers a number of solutions for paying attention to possible heat-related problems. They offer tips on:
- Engineering controls
- Work practices
- Personal protective equipment
The training includes how to recognize common signs and symptoms of heat stress. This advice alone is worth knowing as this extends beyond the workplace to your personal life. It may save a family member one day. As the Benjamin Franklin axiom goes “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” is as true today as it was when Franklin made the quote.
As someone who has had to tell a family member that their loved one has been taken to the hospital due to something that happened at work, you never want to be in that situation. Prevent it from happening!