How To Prevent Illness From Working in the Heat

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In countries like Cambodia, where extreme heat and humidity are part of every day life, it’s crucial that workers look to prevent heat illness. Heat illness occurs when the body cannot sufficiently cool itself. Some factors that contribute to this include:

  • temperature
  • humidity
  • amount of air movement
  • radiant temperature of surroundings
  • clothing
  • physical activity

Heat illness covers a range of medical conditions that can arise when the body is unable to properly cope with the heat.

  • heat stroke
  • fainting
  • heat exhaustion
  • heat cramps
  • rashes
  • heat fatigue

Signs and symptoms of heat illness include feeling sick, nauseous, dizzy or weak, clumsiness, collapse and convulsions. Workers with these signs and symptoms should seek immediate medical attention.

Employers and workers can take important steps to reduce the risk of heat illness. These include:

  • rescheduling tasks so the got tasks are performed during the cooler part of the day.
  • wearing light clothing that still provides adequate protection.
  • reducing the time spent doing hot tasks.
  • providing extra rest breaks.
  • ensuring adequate hydration with not only drinking water but also an electrolyte drink.
  • installing fans or air conditioners in hot work areas.

By adopting heat reduction processes, you can protect yourself and your workers from heat illness.