With summer on the horizon, we thought it would be beneficial to share 7 of our top tips for keeping you and your workforce safe in the summer sun.
Its no secret that water plays a huge part in the day to day function of the human body, with 60% of the body being made up of water. The NHS advise that we drink around 8 glasses of water per day, however when working outside with heightened physical activity during summer, they advise an increased amount to avoid dehydration.
Signs of dehydration.
•Tired or sleepy
•Decreased urine output
•Urine is low volume and more yellowish than normal
High levels of dehydration can lead to dizziness, fevers, confusion and in severe cases comas or seizures.
Make sure you keep a water bottle to hand throughout the day, drinking consistently, and re filling when you can.
From March – October, the sun is at its strongest between the hours of 11:00am and 3:00pm. If you are able to, ensure that you schedule lunch breaks between these hours to avoid working during the hottest part of the day. Understandably you may be unable to take additional breaks, however when working during high temperatures the body exerts itself at a faster rate, therefore try to allow for more or longer breaks to make up for this.
When the opportunity presents itself, such as on breaks – sit in the shade.
An effective and simple way to cool yourself down. If you also notice a shady spot on site, perhaps ask colleagues to alternate positions, so that each of you can feel the benefit of it at some point throughout the day.
4. Keep Your Top On
How many times have you walked past a building site on a hot day and seen the majority of employees with their shirts off? Probably frequently, as removing layers is one of the biggest temptations when feeling the heat.
Unfortunately this is one thing you should be avoiding when trying to keep cool.
The material of your T-shirt acts as a useful barrier between your skin and the suns harmful rays, therefore taking it off can cause you to suffer from sunburn, peeling and sunstroke. Resist the temptation and keep your top on!
5. Wear A Hat
If you are not required to wear a helmet when working outside, ensure that you are protecting not only your head, but the nape of your neck, your face and your ears from the sun with another form of PPE or clothing. This can be achieved by wearing a cap with a longer peak, or even a neck cape to protect the nape of your neck. Wearing a wide-brimmed hat outdoors is also a great way to protect your head, eyes, and skin from the sun’s ultraviolet rays.
Everybody needs sun-cream to protect their skin from damaging UV rays, reducing the risk of sun burn, sunstroke and even preventing skin cancer or malignant melanoma.
Sun-cream Rules And Benefits
•Apply every 2 hours
•Wear a high factor of at least 15SPF
•Prevents premature ageing
•Lowers skin cancer risks
Up to 80% of the suns UV rays can pass through clouds. So even if you are sat in the shade, or if the day becomes overcast – keep applying it frequently.
7. Smoked Safety Spectacles
Some of the suns effects on the eyes include Cataracts, a clouding of the eyes lens that can blur vision.
Ensure that you wear a smoked safety spectacle that is compatible with your PPE, to avoid any damage to your eyes over an extended period of time.
To conclude, try putting these 7 steps into practise when working outside to keep yourself safe in the sun!