|OSHA's Heat Illness Prevention campaign, launched in 2011, educates employers and workers on the dangers of working in hot weather.|
Overview: Working in Outdoor and Indoor Heat Environments
Millions of U.S. workers are exposed to heat in their workplaces. Although illness from exposure to heat is preventable, every year, thousands become sick from occupational heat exposure, and some cases are fatal. Most outdoor fatalities, 50% to 70%, occur in the first few days of working in warm or hot environments because the body needs to build a tolerance to the heat gradually over time. The process of building tolerance is called heat acclimatization. Lack of acclimatization represents a major risk factor for fatal outcomes.
Occupational risk factors for heat illness include heavy physical activity, warm or hot environmental conditions, lack of acclimatization, and wearing clothing that holds in body heat. (See also, personal risk factors, below.)
Hazardous heat exposure can occur indoors or outdoors, and can occur during any season if the conditions are right, not only during heat waves. The following is a list of some industries where workers have suffered heat-related illnesses.
Site Safety can help by creating your Heat Illness Prevention Program. Call the experts today.