Summer is Coming: Preventing Heat-Related Illness on the Job
In Florida, the worst time to work outside is doubtlessly summer where the heat and long days can lead many employees to be at risk from heat-related illnesses. Heat stroke and exhaustion are very real problems that can happen if you aren’t careful when working outside. Additionally, even if you aren’t afflicted completely by the heat, there is a tendency to be less focused in cases of great heat that could lead to injury-causing mistakes. What are some of the best ways to help prevent heat-related illness while on the job?
The single best way to beat the heat is to stay hydrated. Most of all heat-related illnesses are caused by dehydration, so drinking plenty of fluids is the best way to prevent this. Water is always preferred over sports drinks or anything else, so it is always recommended to keep a water bottle handy when working outside for extended periods of time.
Depending on your job, it isn’t always feasible to take regular breaks as needed, but you should if you can. What is usually more easily controlled is the type of clothing that you wear. To help your body regulate its temperature more easily, wear loose fitting, lightweight clothing and a hat, if possible. Wearing sunscreen will also help you not only protect yourself against sunburn, but it will allow your skin to cool your body better, preventing heat exhaustion. Finally, be extra careful of all these risk factors if you are using medication or have a medical condition that may alter your ability to regulate heat.
Even if all the preventative protocols are followed, sometimes heat-related illnesses and injuries do occur and if they do while you are on the job, you have the right to collect worker’s compensation. If your employer tries to deny you this, call us at the Franco Law Firm and we will help you fight for your rights. To schedule a free consultation with us today, please call (813) 872-0929.