August is here and its sky-high temperatures show no signs of dropping. As a warehouse manager, you’re rightfully concerned about how the summer heat will impact your team.
In fact, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration requires employers to provide workplaces free of known hazards.
Here’s a look at what you can do to provide safe working conditions for the rest of this sweltering season.
4 Ways to Protect Your Warehouse Workers From Summer Heat
Keep Them Hydrated
While in the heat, OSHA recommends that workers drink cool water often — even when they aren’t thirsty. If possible, install drinking water stations throughout your warehouse so workers have easy access to it. In the event you can’t provide this, remind workers daily to bring a large thermos filled with cool water to work with them.
Provide Regular Rest Breaks
Working in high temperatures is hard on the body. OSHA advises giving workers rest breaks in the shade at regular intervals, allowing them to rest long enough to recover from the heat. This will likely mean you need to incorporate more breaks into their day than usual, but it’s necessary to keep them safe and healthy.
Educate on the Signs of Heat-Related Illness
Unfortunately, working in high temperatures can lead to several heat-related illnesses such as heat stroke, heat exhaustion, and heat cramps. It’s important for workers to know the signs of these sicknesses so they can recognize them in themselves and their peers. For example, an awareness that heavy sweating, dizziness or lightheadedness, and fatigue are signs of heat exhaustion can allow a worker suffering from this ailment to quickly get the help they need.
Adjust Shifts Accordingly
There’s a difference between hot weather and a serious heatwave. If the forecast for the week predicts above-average highs, it might make sense to adjust your warehouse workers’ hours. For example, you might have the first shift come in earlier to beat the daytime heat or start the second shift a bit later when the afternoon heat has passed. More comfortable temperatures will create a better work environment that’s safer for your team.
Ready to expand your Northern Indiana or Southwestern Michigan warehouse team? Wood Staffing wants to help you find the best fit for every open position. Contact us today to get started!