Summer Construction Safety: Protecting Workers From Sun Damage

construction worker building a new roof or foundation while sitting in the sun during the summer

Summer Construction Safety: Protecting Workers From Sun Damage

Protect Your Crew from the Summer Sun with These Safety Tips

Summer is here, and with it comes longer days of intense sunlight. Although this may be exciting for beach days and backyard barbecues, it can pose a hazard to construction workers who are outside all day. Sunburns, dehydration, and sunstroke are all serious risks while working in the hot summer sun. In this blog, we’ll discuss the best tips, strategies, and supplies that can help prevent your crew from being in danger while working this summer.

How to Read UV Index & What It Means

The UV Index is an important tool when trying to protect yourself and your crew from the sun. It measures the level of ultraviolet radiation in the atmosphere and how strong the sun’s rays are. The scale ranges from 1-11, with 11 being the strongest. On days when the UV Index is high (8-11), taking extra precautions is important, as the Sun is at its strongest and most dangerous. As you spend more time outdoors, these strong rays can begin to absorb into your skin, leading to sunburn and other sun-related ailments.

How to Protect Construction Workers from Getting Sun Damage During the Summer

Before your next construction or renovation project outdoors, properly prepare your crew and site for UV exposure. Below, find the best tips for protecting your crew from the sun this Summer

Wear Sunscreen with SPF Over 30

Sunscreen is an absolute must when working outdoors during the Summer. Apply a generous and even coating of sunscreen with SPF over 30 before any outdoor work begins. Make sure to reapply every two hours or when you notice any sweating from the heat. Even if you are fully covered with clothing, you should apply sunscreen, as UV rays can penetrate through fabrics.

Provide Ample Shade & Breaks

The Sun’s intensity is highest from 10am-2pm, so make sure to provide ample shade and frequent breaks for your workers during these hours. During these breaks, your crew should have access to water and other hydrating beverages to prevent dehydration. If possible, provide a large umbrella or canopy for extra shade.

Invest in Protective Gear

One of the most effective ways to protect your crew from the sun is to provide them with protective gear. Hats, long sleeves, and sunglasses are all great tools for protection. Invest in hats and other protective gear with UPF (ultraviolet protection factor) to ensure optimal protection from the sun’s rays. Since construction clothing can be known to be somewhat heavy and uncomfortable, make sure to provide breathable and lightweight options that still keep your workers safe.

Create Sun Safety Protocols

Like any safety or emergency, create a sun safety protocol that all workers must follow. In this plan, note what to do in the event of a sunburn or overexposure, and list any additional safety tips for summertime work. Ensure this protocol is visible to your workers while on the job.

Offer Accommodations for Those with Sun Sensitivities

For workers who already have sensitivities to the sun, make sure to provide accommodations. Many health conditions can have adverse reactions when exposed to the sun and heat, so be aware of any conditions that may require special attention. If necessary, offer additional shade or protective gear to those who may be in greater danger of sun damage.

Contact Atlantic Equipment for Construction Safety Equipment & Instructions for Projects & Sites of All Sizes

Whether you are about to start building a new roof or tackling an entire house renovation, Atlantic Equipment has the necessary construction safety supplies. During the harsh Summer months, Atlantic can help keep your site stocked with the necessary protective gear for your crew. Visit our website or contact us today to learn more about our construction safety equipment and supplies!

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