Water, Rest, Shade - How to Fight off Heat Illness

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Water, Rest, and Shade to prevent heat exhaustion

During hot, humid weather, like we have been having in Chicago, the body cannot sweat enough to cool itself down.  So, how do workers stay safe?  If you don't get enough water, rest, and shade, you can suffer from heat exhaustion or heat stroke.

In 2014, 2,630 workers suffered from heat illness and 18 died.

So, what can an employer do to prevent heat illness?  OSHA suggests:

1)  Provide workers with water, rest, and shade.

2)  Allow new or returning workers to gradually increase workloads and take more frequent breaks as they build their tolerance to the heat.

3)  Plan for emergencies.

4)  Monitor workers for signs of illness.

Heat Exhaustion Symptoms:

  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Sweaty Skin
  • Weakness
  • Cramps
  • Nausea, Vomiting
  • Fast Heart Beat


Heat Stroke Symptoms:

  • Red, hot, dry skin
  • High temperature
  • Confusion
  • Convusions
  • Fainting


 Read more about how to prevent heat illness at OSHA.gov.



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