How is Increasingly Hot Weather Affecting Workers?

It is well known that working outdoors during the summer months can be dangerous. But many people fail to realize that the dangers of hot weather are not restricted to the outdoors. Workers in various environments can be affected by hot weather.

Research has shown that work environments higher than normal skin temperature increases the risk of heat-related stress and illness. That means that any temperature – inside or out – that is more than 90 degrees, could affect your body’s ability to cool down. That’s because your skin cannot lose heat, which causes blood temperature to rise. Your body cannot release the heat, but rather stores it, which raises core body temperature.

When your core body temperature is high, you may experience fatigue, dehydration, irritability, nausea/vomiting, and heat exhaustion.

What Work Environments are Vulnerable to Heat?

Indoor and outdoor work environments can affect workers when temperatures rise. Increasingly hot weather could impact you if you work in the following occupations:

Indoors:

·         Foundry

·         Glass, brick, or ceramic manufacturing

·         Electrical utilities

·         Chemical plants

·         Distribution warehouses

·         Commercial kitchens

Outdoors:

·         Farming

·         Landscaping

·         Oil and gas operations

·         Emergency response operations

·         Hazardous waste management

If you work in any of these occupations, be aware of the signs of heat exhaustion. Get medical attention right away if you experience rash, cramps, dizziness, no desire to drink, or feel faint. Without proper treatment, heat-related illness can lead to serious complications, or can even be fatal.

California Fire Prevention Safety

There are more than 350,000 California residents who live in “very high hazard” fire zones. While the zones laid out by officials may be specifically referring to wildfires, it is important to remember that all fires start somewhere. For California families and workplaces, fires can result from even the smallest sources, such as:

·         A thrown out cigarette

·         Burning outdoor brush

·         Unattended bonfires or fireplaces

·         Kitchen fires

It doesn’t take much for fire to start, and in these high hazard zones, it is more important than ever for Californian’s to practice good fire prevention.

Fire Prevention Tips

Inside a building, a fire can spread in as little as two minutes. Practice good fire safety techniques by doing the following:

·         Install smoke alarms on all floors of your home

·         Test smoke alarms monthly and change batteries

·         Keep a fire extinguisher near any sources of open flame

·         Create a fire escape plan with your family or co-workers

·         Never leave fire unattended, including stoves, candles, or fireplaces

·         Do not smoke cigarettes inside of buildings or cars

·         Avoid overloading electrical outlets

·         Make sure your lamps use the correct wattage bulbs

·         If you smell smoke or gas in your home, exit and call 911

·         If you have concerns about outlets or electrical cables, call an electrician

By following these tips, you can reduce the risk of a fire and potentially save lives. Good fire prevention techniques are important in every environment. Talk to your family about fire safety, especially during summer months when bonfires, beach parties, and fireworks are more common.