How do I minimise the risk for employees working outdoors during summer?

During summer, the sun can pose a real challenge to both employees and employers. Sunburn, dehydration and heat stroke are all very real dangers to your workers. To ensure their safety, as well as ensuring that you stay on the right side of legislation, it is important that you minimise risk for your employees. You can do this by following this simple five step approach.

  1. Eliminate the risk – if at all possible, try to avoid having employees working in the sun.
  2. Reduce the risk – if step one is not possible, try to adjust shift patterns so that your workers are not outside during the hottest part of the day. The sun is generally at its most potent during the hours of 10 am and 2 pm.
  3. Introduce a barrier – try to encourage your workers to wear sunscreen of at least factor 15, ideally higher.
  4. Safe systems of work – as an employer, you should ensure that your workers have plenty of hydrating fluids to hand, such as water.
  5. Personal Protective Equipment – it is vital that you provide your workers with all the necessary PPE they need to cover up whilst under the sun, such as hats and light, long sleeved clothing.

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