Keeping Outdoor Workers Safe During Warmer Weather

If you're an outdoor worker, it is important to take precautions against exposure to sun, heat and bug bites during the summer months.

Sun

To protect against the sun's harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays, take the following steps:

  • Cover up. Wear lightweight, tightly woven clothing.
  • Use sunscreen. A sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 15 will block 93 percent of UV rays.
  • Wear a hat. It should protect your neck, ears, forehead and nose.
  • Wear UV-absorbent shades. Sunglasses should block 99 to 100 per cent of UVA and UVB radiation.

Heat

To beat the heat, take the following precautions:

  • Drink plenty of water before you get thirsty.
  • Wear light, loose-fitting, breathable clothing.
  • Eat smaller meals before work.
  • Skip the caffeine; drink water instead.
  • Be aware that equipment such as respirators or work suits can increase heat stress.

Ticks

Take the following precautions to protect yourself from ticks:

  • Wear light-coloured clothing to see ticks more easily.
  • Wear long sleeves and long pants.
  • Tuck pant legs into socks or boots.
  • Wear high boots or closed shoes that cover your feet completely.
  • Wear a hat.
  • Use tick repellents, but not on your face.
  • Wash and dry your work clothes at high temperatures.

Insect Bites And Stings

Bee, wasp, hornet and yellow jacket stings are typically only dangerous to those who are allergic or have been stung multiple times.

  • Wear bug repellent.
  • Avoid wearing heavy perfumes or scented lotions.
  • Check before drinking from cups, bottles or cans. Stinging insects are attracted to sweet drinks.

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