Heat Illness Prevention and COVID-19
95° + temperatures have hit in the Central Valley. We are updating Heat Illness Prevention Programs to incorporate Covid-19 precautions. In this blog we are focusing on two specific areas: water and shade.
First, I’d like to address water as everyone needs to be consuming adequate fluids, especially when the weather is hot. It’s important to follow personal hygiene and sanitization practices for commonly touched surfaces. Igloo jugs to fill single use cups will need to be monitored and sanitized appropriately. Even the single use water bottles will need to be handled with proper personal hygiene caution. As always, make sure you are providing sufficient quantities of cooled fresh water at 1 quart per person per hour in the workplace.
Preventative recovery rest breaks is the next area to be addressed. Shaded rest areas must be provided. For every two hours worked employees must be provided with a preventative rest period of at least 10 minutes. Employers must take additional measures to be sure that employees can take a break in a shaded area while obeying social distancing of 6 feet.
Employees should be trained to keep 6 feet of social distance during breaks and transportation to prevent infection.
In California, Cal/OSHA will continue to enforce regulations associated with COVID-19 and hazards associated with the workplace including heat illness and other applicable hazards. Please review your Heat Illness Prevention programs with a review of your specific COVID-19 procedures.
Please contact us if we can help you in adjusting your plans accordingly.
2 hours working in 95 degrees requires 2 hour recovery period. Just to clarify.
The previous comment does not state where they find the requirement of a 2 hour recovery period, but here is what is stated in T8CCR 3395(e)
"When temperatures reach 95 degrees or above, the employer shall ensure that the employee takes a minimum 10 minute net preventative cool-down rest period every two hours. The preventative cool-down rest period required by this paragraph may be provided concurrently with any other meal or rest period required by Industrial Welfare Commission Order No. 14 if the timing of the preventative cool-down rest period coincides with a required meal or rest period thus resulting in no additional preventative cool-down rest period required in an eight hour workday."
This says that every two hours, a minimum of a 10 minute recovery period is required, not two hours.
Clarification- The required 2 hour break in “high heat”is specific to agriculture. Thanks for reaching out James!
Wow I got it all wrong 10 minute recovery period for every 2 hours worked. I was reading my comment wrong apologies. If we had a 2 hour recovery for every 2 hours worked we wouldn’t be working! 10 minutes every 2 hours worked in 95 degrees.