Management of Heat Stress:

Working in hot and humid environment can raise body’s internal (core) temperature which can potentially cause a range of adverse heat related illnesses, unless the risk is effectively managed. Contractor shall comply with Kuwait Environment Public Authority (K-EPA) and meet the following requirements for managing risk associated with heat stress, in order to protect the workforce from adverse effects.

  1. Measure Heat stress before assigning employee work which exposes him to heat and humidity. WBGT meter can be used to measure heat stress.
  2. Training: Conduct awareness sessions for employees before start of the summer season and before assigning work in hot and humid climate. Train employees to take adequate measures to prevent occurrence of heat related incidents. Supervisors or colleagues can be trained to monitor “at risk employees” for early symptoms and indicators of heat strain like pulse, and body temperature.
  3. 3. Protective clothing: Employees should wear light colored and loose fitting cotton clothes.
  4. Acclimatize: New manual workers from cold climatic country and manual workers resuming work after 3 weeks of leave should work gradually and do full manual work in 5 days.
  5. 5. Employees working outdoor should drink plenty of cold water to replace water loss. Drink 1 cup (150 ml) every 20 minutes. They should not take extra salt and avoid tea, coffee and caffeinated drink as they dehydrate body. They should not eat large meals whlie at work as food generates heat in the body.
  6. 6. Employees should wipe of sweat regularly and keep skin dry with individual/ disposable towel. Change wet clothes and wear dry clothes
  7. Work - s rest regime: Manual outdoor work is prohibited from 12:00 to 16:00 hours during June to August months. Monitor Heat stress in the work environment using WBGT meter. Employees should check with their supervisor and use work-rest regime (take adequate breaks), or adjust work schedule to level out work over the shift, or schedule the heavy work during the cooler part of the shift. Spend break time/ idle time inherent in work in a cooler area.
  8. Health Status: Employees with cardiovascular disease, kidney disease, and poor health are at high risk and need fitness certificate from Physician to work in hot and humid environment. Employees on diuretics, vasodliators or long term medication should inform their treating doctor about their work.
  9. First aid: Call ECCC, if you suspect the person suffering heat exhaustion, heat stroke or syncope. Move victim to a cool room or shade. Make victim lie down flat and loosen clothes and shoes. Elevate victim’s legs if Heat Syncope/ Heat Exhaustion. Make victim drink plenty of cold water if Heat exhaustion/ Heat Syncope. Apply ice packs/ immerse the body of victim in cold water if Heat Stroke. Continue first aid measures untli medical help arrives.
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