Are you aware that your outdoor workers are one of the groups at the greatest risk for heat stroke? Did you know that heat stroke can lead to death?
You need to be aware of the causes of heat stroke as well as the symptoms and ways to prevent dehydration which can lead to heat stroke. Then you need to make sure key people in your company are aware as well, and share it with the workers who have the highest risk.
We’ve already had quite a few days of upper 90’s here in the Northeast. And the weather doesn’t seem to be easing up anytime soon.
Here are 4 simple ideas to keep your workers safe:
1. Hydrate! Make sure your workers have access to water and Gatorade throughout the day. Have coolers and packs of Gatorade for them to make in the morning before they head off to their job locations. Caffeinated drinks such as sodas, coffee, and tea do not count; these drinks will really dehydrate you.
2. Thank! Thank your employees for their hard work with reusable water jugs (the big old school blue or red ones). They’ll appreciate the gift, and it can help them stay healthy and safe while they’re on the job.
3. Educate! Dedicate a safety meeting or morning meeting to training workers on how they can prevent heat exhaustion and stroke, plus what to do if a co-worker is showing symptoms of heat stroke(don’t forget to share the symptoms). Help them to understand that this can be serious, and include your location contact in these trainings so someone at each location is aware and can be an advocate.
4. Repeat! Bring this up at different times throughout the summer. After so long, workers will become less aware. Especially during extremely busy times. Make sure they have easy access to water and Gatorade during long hours due to storm outages and damage. Share this Heat Safety Tool appfrom OSHA with them to help keep it top of mind. It’s free and available for Android and iPhone, with a Blackberry update coming soon.
Even though you’re not working outside, it might be a good idea for HR to download the app and check it out. Then, on days with exceptionally high risk levels, you can send out a mass email or text reminding workers to take breaks and stay hydrated.
What are you doing for your outdoor workers this summer? Share your ideas in the comments for others to learn from!
Originally posted at: http://uecubenefit.uecu.org/