CPO MESSAGE - ADVISORY ON HEAT STRESS
Message from the Chief Prevention Officer:
ADVISORY ON HEAT STRESS
Heat Stress on the job can affect any worker, regardless of occupation/sector, location or experience, and can also result in illnesses/injuries and in some cases death.
Outdoor workers are particularly vulnerable, including municipal workers, construction workers, farmers and others. Underground and surface miners may also be exposed to heat stress, as well as factory workers when exposed to hot production processes.
Workers at greatest risk include; young and new workers, workers over the age of 60, workers suffering from medical conditions including high blood pressure and heart disease, and workers taking certain medications.
Prevention is the key to safety when working in hot conditions.
All employers have an obligation to protect workers by providing necessary information on preventative measures, and by taking steps to protect workers from the hazards of heat stress.
Here are some things workers can do to protect themselves:
- Remember to drink plenty of water and hydrating fluids.
- Make sure you are taking in more fluids than you are losing.
- When working outside wear light, loose clothing covering as much of the body as is practicable, cover your head and use sunscreen.
- Remember to take frequent breaks, and where possible, see if work can be scheduled for a cooler part of the day.
- Report concerns of heat stress to supervisor
It is vital to provide first aid immediately to someone experiencing a heat related illness. In an emergency, always call 911.
For more information, please visit the Ministry of Labour’s website.
To report unsafe work practices, please contact the Ministry of Labour Health & Safety Contact Centre toll-free at 1-877-202-0008.