Are you feeling the heat? It’s time to cool down – and here’s how. 

According to the University of Oxford, over the past six decades “the average summer day increased by approximately 0.26°C per decade” in England and Wales. And we are certainly feeling the heat during the summer months.  

What we often find, especially in the UK, is that “good” weather is often unpredictable. So, when we’re hit by the heat waves, businesses need to make sure employees can carry out their activities safely and comfortably.  

Did you know there isn’t a minimum or maximum law for working temperatures? Yes, as stipulated by the UK Government, “guidance suggests a minimum of 16ºC or 13ºC if employees are doing physical work. There’s no guidance for a maximum temperature limit.” 

High temperatures and humidity can affect productivity and even lead to health issues. However, there are several ways to keep employees cool and comfortable at work. So, whilst we can’t control the temperature, here are some tips to help you keep your team working safely in hot weather: 

Provide adequate ventilation 

Proper ventilation can significantly improve air circulation, reducing the heat load in the workspace. Ensure that your office space has enough windows, fans, and air conditioner to provide good airflow. We have placed air conditioning vents across our office and provided fans to our warehouse operatives.  

Stay hydrated 

Make sure drinking water is available on site. Encourage employees to drink water regularly, especially during hot weather. Staying hydrated can prevent heat cramps and exhaustion, keeping employees cool and comfortable. At Rapid Racking we have water coolers located across the office and warehouses and have provided all employees with reusable water bottles.  

Wear appropriate clothing 

Dress code policies should be relaxed during hot weather to allow employees to wear light and breathable clothing, such as cotton, which can keep them cool. In response to rising temperatures in 2022, we sent out a survey to our employees and based on the responses we re-evaluated our dress code and implemented new policies to make staff more comfortable.  

Encourage breaks: 

Allow employees to take regular breaks to rest and hydrate, especially during the hottest hours of the day. Breaks can help keep employees refreshed and prevent heat-related illnesses. This is why we encourage all our employees to take regular breaks and have refurbished and provided designated spaces for them to do so when they are on site.   

Provide cooling equipment:  

Invest in cooling equipment such as fans, dehumidifiers, air conditioners, or coolers to keep the workspace cool. This can improve employee productivity, enhance safety and health, and reduce the risk of heat stress. 

By following these simple tips, you can keep your employees cool, comfortable, and productive during hot weather. Remember to always prioritise your employees’ health and safety above all else. 

Are you ready to plan ahead for the winter months?

Read our blog: Bad weather at work: Surviving the cold

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