Heat Illness Prevention
Any individual, regardless of age, sex, or health status, can develop a heat-related illness if engaged in intense physical activity or exposed to environmental heat. If heat exposure exceeds the physiologic capacity of the body to cool itself, core body temperature may rise, and a range of heat-related symptoms and conditions can develop – from relatively minor treatable heat cramps to severe life threatening heat stroke, which is always an extreme medical emergency. Even when acclimatized, adequate hydration and rest is critical to avoid the development of heat-related illness.
UC Davis Departments with any outdoor places of employment must adhere to the Heat Illness Prevention Standard, Title 8 California Code of Regulations Section 3395. This Standard outlines four steps to prevent heat illness:
- Planning: Develop and implement written procedures for complying with the Cal/OSHA Heat Illness Prevention Standard
- Training: Train all employees and supervisors about heat illness prevention
- Water: Provide enough fresh water so that each employee can drink at least 1 quart per hour, and encourage them to do so
- Shade: Provide access to a shaded area to prevent or recover from heat illness and where employees can take rest breaks
To assist UC Davis departments in establishing and implementing a heat illness prevention program, a Heat Illness Prevention Procedures Manual has been prepared by the Office of Environmental Health & Safety in accordance with Cal/OSHA regulations and University policy.
Heat illness training is required annually for supervisors and employees routinely exposed to higher temperatures. A Heat Illness Prevention Training PowerPoint presentation is accessible to aid departments in complying with the training element of the Heat Illness Prevention Standard. EH&S can provide this training to departments upon request.
Additional information regarding Heat Illness can be found in at the Cal/OSHA website and in UC Davis Policy and Procedure Manual, 290-53: Heat Illness Prevention