RoofingOutdoor workers in agriculture, construction, and other industries are exposed to a great deal of exertional and environmental heat stress that may lead to severe illness or death.

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) recommends that employers have a plan in place to prevent heat-related illness. The agency recently released a Workplace Solutions Bulletin that provides specific guidance for companies to follow when employees work outdoors.

Three basic elements

According to NIOSH, a workplace plan to help workers avoid heat stress should include:

  • Hydration (drinking plenty of water)
  • Acclimatization (getting used to weather conditions)
  • Schedules that alternate work with rest

NIOSH also recommends that employers train workers about the hazards of working in hot environments

The bulletin also offers updated statistics, case studies and examples that illustrate how extreme heat exposures can lead to occupational illnesses and injuries and possible death.

Click to download:

Preventing Heat-related Illness or Death of Outdoor Workers [PDF - 684 KB]

Click here for more NIOSH information about heat stress.