Summer is often a busy time and the most profitable season for outdoor workers. But, outdoor construction sites seldom see ideal temperatures, especially during the hot season. Spending hours under sun can pose serious threat to your health. During hot summers, even seasoned professionals feel the effects of the heat. Whether it is a simple yard work or constructing a building, taking safety measures to beat the heat is very essential.
Here are five tips that will help you avoid heat-related injuries during summer work.
- Drink plenty of water: Staying comfortable and remaining injury-free during summer work season is only possible by keeping yourselves hydrated. If you are an individual who works outside in the heat, ensure to drink plenty of water to maintain good health. Adding some flavours to water like lemon or lime juice can make water more tolerable. However, avoid consuming drinks that are high on caffeine as they provide only a small amount of hydration. Furthermore, these drinks also increase your heart rate and act as a diuretic, removing water from your body.
- Avoid sun as much as possible: For a construction worker, it is not practical to stay out of the sun absolutely, unless work is being indoors. Therefore, it is important to consider rescheduling the work when the outdoor temperature is extremely high. To prevent overheating, use canopies or other shading systems whenever necessary as shading can provide cooling effects. Temperatures above 90 degrees can be detrimental to the health of outdoor construction workers.
- Know the signs and symptoms of heat illness: Heat illnesses such as heat exhaustion or heat stroke can come suddenly and unexpectedly. Muscle cramping is one of the early signs of heat illness. If you suffer from muscle cramp, take a break, drink water and allow yourself to cool down. Additionally, you can move to a cooler location, lie down, apply wet clothes on the body if you suffer from heavy sweating, pale skin, weak pulse, fainting, nausea or weakness. Seek medical attention if any of the symptoms worsen.
- First aid kit helps: Many a times, you may not be able to carry first aid supplies with you. But, the responsibility of making it accessible to the workers lies on supervisor and contractor. Basic first aid for minor cuts and falls should be made available to the workers on site as the medical assistance can be provided immediately, in case of any emergency. Injuries when treated immediately helps in limiting the damage greatly and further, prevents infections from spreading.
- Eat well: Besides drinking a lot of water, it is also important to eat nutritious meal. However, ensure not to overeat and skip meals. Consider starting off your mornings with oatmeal or eggs, and salads or turkey wrap for lunch. This will definitely help you sustain through the day. In addition, consuming healthier snack will help in keeping you awake and focused. Remember, food is one of the best ways to recover your body from stress in hot conditions.
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