HR Hot Topic – Cal/OSHA Reminds Employers to Protect Outdoor Workers from Heat Illness
-Via the Department of Industrial Relations-
Sacramento—Cal/OSHA is reminding all employers to protect outdoor workers from heat illness as excessive heat warnings have been issued throughout the state with high temperatures forecast through this Thursday. Employers in California must take steps to protect outdoor workers from heat illness by providing water, rest, shade and training.
Cal/OSHA’s heat illness prevention standard applies to all outdoor worksites. To prevent heat illness, the law requires employers to provide outdoor workers fresh water, access to shade at 80 degrees and whenever requested by a worker, cool-down rest breaks in addition to regular breaks and maintain a written prevention plan with training on the signs of heat illness and what to do in case of an emergency.
It is important for employers to assess the risk of heat illness based on a worker’s duties and take appropriate steps to prevent them from getting sick. Regardless of the level of risk, all outdoor workers must be protected equally and employers with outdoor workers must maintain an effective heat illness prevention plan year-round.
Employers with outdoor workers in all industries must follow these heat illness prevention requirements:
- Plan – Develop and implement an effective written heat illness prevention plan that includes emergency response procedures.
- Training – Train all employees and supervisors on heat illness prevention.
- Water – Provide drinking water that is fresh, pure, suitably cool and free of charge so that each worker can drink at least 1 quart per hour, and encourage workers to do so.
- Rest – Encourage workers to take a cool-down rest in the shade for at least five minutes when they feel the need to do so to protect themselves from overheating. Workers should not wait until they feel sick to cool down.
- Shade – Provide proper shade when temperatures exceed 80 degrees. Workers have the right to request and be provided shade to cool off at any time.
We will continue to provide further guidance regarding developing COVID-related news. Should you have any questions, please contact our office at 916.444.6200, firstname.lastname@example.org, or your HR Consultant directly.
This information was obtained from the Department of Industrial Relations. View original source here: https://www.dir.ca.gov/DIRNews/2021/2021-65.html