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When temperatures rise, people can find it harder to concentrate, may feel more fatigued, or may even faint. All of these are symptoms of heat stress - where working in hot temperatures causes heat stroke, heat exhaustion and/or dehydration. Typically places like bakeries, foundries and laundrettes need to counteract this condition year round, however in the summer when temperatures soar, even office workers can be susceptible to heat related issues.

As part of your normal risk assessment, you can add in considerations for heat. The major factors that should be considered are:

  • Work rate - the more physical the job, the more body heat will be generated.
  • Working climate - consider the air temperature, humidity, air movement and the effects of working near a heat source.
  • Employee Clothing and Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) - while an important part of a job role, these can impair the efficiency of sweating and other means of natural temperature regulation. There are other factors too such as age, build and medical factors that can impact an individual’s tolerance for heat.

How can you reduce the risks?

Whether looking for a year round solution, or just something to help when summer temperatures soar, there are steps you can take to reduce the risk for your employees.

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