Don't Lose Your Cool or PPE This Summer

Everyone wants to stay cool in the summer. For outdoor workers, summer temperatures create a big temptation to remove PPE in order to beat the heat.

Personal protective equipment is meant to be the last line of defense for injury. Each task dictates what type of PPE should be worn for protection. Every item that is removed, even temporarily, puts workers at risk—don’t let employees’ decision to not wear PPE be their last.

Here are some suggestions to help workers avoid compromising their safety when the heat leaves them feeling uncomfortable:

  • Provide frequent breaks so that employees have a chance to cool off. This should be done in an air-conditioned space or a shaded area, and lots of water should be provided.
  • Educate workers on how to dress in the summer months, emphasizing the need for lightweight, light-coloured clothing.
  • Offer cold compresses (applied to the neck is most effective) or a fan to help employees cool down during their breaks.
  • Require the use of sunscreen to avoid uncomfortable burns.