What sorts of safety concerns are present at construction sites can be influenced by many things. This includes what time of year it is. Each season can bring its own particular workplace safety risks for construction workers who work outdoors.
In summer, the great deal of heat the season can bring can create potential safety dangers for construction workers. Such heat could put such workers at risk for conditions such as heat stroke or heat exhaustion.
Heat-related conditions can have major implications for a construction worker’s health. Such conditions can even be deadly. According to the Center for Construction Research and Training, in 2015, heat-related conditions took the lives of 17 construction workers.
Given the significant health implications heat-related conditions can have, it can be important for construction workers to be aware of what kinds of steps they can take to protect themselves from such conditions when working outside over the summer.
One thing they can do on this front is take certain preparations before working in the summer heat. This includes making sure their clothing is appropriate for the weather conditions. Lightweight, loose-fitting and light-colored clothes tend to be best for warm-weather conditions.
Another important heat protection step is making sure one is taking sufficient breaks when working, and that these breaks are taken in an appropriately cool place.
Additionally, paying careful attention to one’s fluid intake when working outside can help with heat protection. Regularly drinking water is very important when it comes to summer outdoor work. Meanwhile, drinking things like caffeinated beverages is generally best avoided during such work.
When a construction worker does suffer a heat-related illness while doing outdoor work, there is another thing it can be very important for them to protect. This is their rights related to compensation, such as their workers’ comp rights. What steps a worker takes on this front could have significant impacts on what sort of situation, including financial situation, they end up in following the illness. Workers’ compensation attorneys can give guidance on what measures can be taken to protect such rights in the wake of a workplace heat-related illness.
Source: Safety+Health, “Summer heat can be deadly for construction workers, CPWR cautions,” June 8, 2017