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Thursday, July 31, 2014

Protecting Yourself from Heat Stress

Today's post was shared by Construction @ NIOSH and comes from

Heat stress, from exertion or hot environments, places workers at risk for illnesses such as heat stroke, heat exhaustion, or heat cramps.

Heat Stroke

A condition that occurs when the body becomes unable to control its temperature, and can cause death or permanent disability.


First Aid

  • Request immediate medical assistance.
  • Move the worker to a cool, shaded area.
  • Remove excess clothing and apply cool water to their body.

Heat Exhaustion

The body’s response to an excessive loss of water and salt, usually through sweating.


  • Rapid heart beat
  • Heavy sweating
  • Extreme weakness or fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea, vomiting
  • Irritability
  • Fast, shallow breathing
  • Slightly elevated body temperature

First Aid

  • Rest in a cool area.
  • Drink plenty of water or other cool beverages.
  • Take a cool shower, bath, or sponge bath.

Heat Cramps

Affect workers who sweat a lot during strenuous activity. Sweating depletes the body’s salt and moisture levels.


  • Muscle cramps, pain, or spasms in the abdomen, arms or legs

First Aid

  • Stop all activity, and sit in a cool place.
  • Drink clear juice or a sports beverage, or drink water with food.
    • Avoid salt tablets.
  • Do not return to strenuous work for a few hours after the cramps subside.
  • Seek medical attention if you have the following: heart problems, are on a low-sodium diet, or if...
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Jon L. Gelman of Wayne NJ is the author of NJ Workers’ Compensation Law (West-Thompson-Reuters) and co-author of the national treatise, Modern Workers’ Compensation Law (West-Thompson-Reuters). For over 4 decades the Law Offices of Jon L Gelman  1.973.696.7900  have been representing injured workers and their families who have suffered occupational accidents and illnesses.