OSHA News Release - (Archived) Table of Contents|
OSHA Trade Release
July 9, 2003
Contact: Frank Meilinger
Phone: (202) 693-1999
WASHINGTON -- The sun and warm weather of summer can also bring special hazards for those working outdoors. To help employers and workers stay safe throughout the summer months, OSHA offers tips that can help prevent many heat-related deaths, illnesses, and injuries.
"Summer is a time to be enjoyed, but it's also a season that can present unique hazards to those who work outdoors or in very hot environments," said OSHA Administrator John Henshaw. "Our job is to help educate employers and workers learn how to reduce heat related illnesses and fatalities."Simple precautions can often save lives."
The combination of heat, humidity and physical labor can lead to fatalities. The two most serious forms of heat related illnesses are heat exhaustion (primarily from dehydration) and heat stroke, which could be fatal. Signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke need immediate attention. Recognizing those warning signs and taking quick action can make a difference in preventing a fatality.
Working Outdoors is a new OSHA fact sheet that offers advice on ways to protect against exposure to ultraviolet radiation (UV), precautions to take if working in extreme heat, and how to protect against Lyme Disease and the West Nile Virus. The fact sheet also offers links for teenagers working at summer jobs.
OSHA's Heat Stress Card lists tips and precautions to prevent many heat-related deaths and injuries. Available in English and Spanish, this laminated fold-up card is free to employers to distribute to their workers. It offers a quick reference about heat-related injuries, including warning signs, symptoms and early treatment.
Protecting Yourself Against Harmful Sunlight is a pocket card that explains how to perform self-examinations to detect early stages of skin cancer. The card, available in English and Spanish, also describes common physical features of skin cancer that can be caused by exposure to the sun.
These OSHA publications can be downloaded from the agency's website www.osha.gov or obtained from the OSHA publications office, Rm. N3101, 200 Constitution Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20210.
More information about heat and sun hazards can be found on OSHA's website, www.osha.gov and at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) www.cdc.gov and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) www.cdc.gov/niosh
OSHA is dedicated to assuring worker safety and health. Safety and health add value to business, the workplace and life. For more information, visit www.osha.gov.
U.S. Labor Department news releases are accessible on the Internet at www.dol.gov. The information in this release will be made available in alternative format upon request (large print, Braille, audio tape or disc) from the COAST office. Please specify which news release when placing your request. Call 202-693-7773 or TTY 202-693-7755.
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