Safety Topic: May 2018
Keep it Cool. Play it Safe.
Texas heat can be dreadful and when the humidity hits 70% a work-area can become a danger zone. Thousands of people are affected by heat-related illnesses each year, but these issues can be prevented. The chances of incidents resulting because of sweaty hands, dizziness and decreased mental alertness increase considerably in hot conditions. Additionally, increased body temperature and discomfort can lead to irritability and frustration, which could lead to more careless behavior.
The GCC Team works in the Texas elements every day, so our Foremen have to be proactive when it comes to working in the heat. We avoid heat-related incidents by focusing on 3 things—water, shade, and rest.
Keep the Crew Hydrated. Make sure that you keep water nearby for the team to stay hydrated. Keep water in storage containers or ice chests that can be easily transported around the job site by golf cart or truck. Provide cold towels for workers near break areas to help keep body temperatures stable. Provide adequate breaks to drink water frequently (every 15 minutes). Encourage them not to wait until they ‘feel thirsty’.
Create the Shade. The best shade is avoiding the sun completely. Adapt shifts to make better use of sun-less early morning and evening work hours. When that is not possible, set up tents to provide shade over some work areas or to allow for a break area
Schedule Breaks. Yeah, it technically works, so why so many breaks? When the sun drains the energy out of your crew it could lead to injury so avoid this by scheduling breaks for the team – in the shade with water available.
How are you keeping your project safe?
Read more about the OSHA recommendations for heat-related injury prevention here. https://www.osha.gov/SLTC/heatillness/heat_index/
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