Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Help employees stay safe in the heat

Sheryl Baumeister,
Human Resources
After a long, frigid winter, it's hard to believe that summer is just around the corner. If this past winter is any indication of what we can look forward to this summer, we can expect it to be hot and humid. For those of us with employees working in the manufacturing environment or outside, the heat may become a serious safety concern that we must educate them about and make sure they are well prepared to fight the heat.

During extremely hot and humid temperatures, the body's ability to cool itself is greatly affected. When our bodies heat too rapidly to properly cool off, our body temperatures rise and heat-related illnesses can develop.

Heat-related illnesses can range from heat cramps to heat exhaustion to more serious cases such as heat stroke. Here are just a few tips to educate your employees on how to help combat the summer heat:
  • Put less fuel on your inner fires. Eat less protein and more water based food. Protein increases metabolic heat production which also increases water loss.
  • Drink plenty of water. Your body needs water to keep cool. Drink plenty of fluids, even if you don't feel thirsty.
  • Rest often. To cool off, make sure your employees are taking small breaks in shaded areas to help keep cool.
  • Dress appropriately. Wear lightweight, light-colored clothing to reflect heat and sunlight.
  • Protect yourself from the sun. To ensure you are fully protected from the sun, wear a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses, and apply a sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher.
With the warm weather upon us, I hope these tips will help keep your employees cool and safe this summer.

This article originally appeared in Trigard Tuesdays, our weekly electronic newsletter featuring information for the funeral industry. Sign up for your free subscription at http://www.trigard.com/tuesdays.

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