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WorkSafe warns about working in the heat

With predictions of a long, hot summer, WorkSafe Vic has warned workers to be aware of the dangers of exposure to high temperatures and the need to be well-hydrated.

WorkSafe’s acting executive director, Stan Krpan, urged business operators and supervisors to ensure planning was in place for workers exposed to high temperatures, particularly when fatigue adds to the danger.

“The first priority of employers and supervisors is to assess what work needs to be done, and how.

One-in-four Victorian workers are exposed to direct sun on a daily basis with agricultural,
transport and construction workers facing the highest level of risk followed by wholesale trade and education workers.

“There are clear safety issues with people working outdoors, but many people who are
working indoors or in confined spaces are also at risk from indirect heat or fatigue.

Mr Krpan said the hot conditions meant everyone had to play their part to ensure no
one was put at risk.

“Considering how high temperatures will be managed has to include the nature of work and the features of the workplace.

“Access to water is essential and rest breaks may have to be increased.

“Some workers will need shelter and protective clothing to keep the sun off them, while regular communication is needed with people working on their own, particularly if they work in direct sun.”

WorkSafe guidance on dealing with hot conditions and fatigue can be found at www.worksafe.vic.gov.au

Worksafe Vic
Ph: 1800 136 089