Heat and cold - 949 entries found
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Chojnacka A., Sudoł-Szopińska I.
Standardization aspects of thermal comfort in office areas
Komfort termiczny w pomieszczeniach biurowych w aspekcie norm [in Polish]
It is known that providing thermal comfort to employees by means of adjustment and control of the relevant environmental parameters results in a decrease in the number of errors and accidents, and an increase in productivity and quality of products and services. According to a report published by the European Agency for the Safety and Health at Work, thermal discomfort is an important physical risk factor in the work environment. The possibilities of analysing the thermal comfort in the work environment according to various Polish and European standards are discussed, together with the design of buildings while taking into account thermal comfort criteria.
Bezpieczeństwo pracy, June 2007, No.6 (429), p.16-19. 11 ref.
Bonauto D., Anderson R., Rauser E., Burke B.
Occupational heat illness in Washington State, 1995-2005
This study reviewed medical records to identify accepted workers' compensation claims for heat-related illness in Washington State over the 11-year period from 1995-2005. A total of 480 such claims were identified. Industries with the highest average annual incidence rate for the compensation of heat-related illness claims were fire protection (80.8/100,000 full-time equivalent workers (FTE)), roofing (59.0/100,000 FTE) and highway, bridge and street construction (44.8/100,000 FTE). Heat-related illness claims were associated with high outdoor temperatures. Medical risk factors for heat-related illness were present in some cases.
American Journal of Industrial Medicine, 2007, Vol.50, p.940-950. Illus. 24 ref.
Work and heat waves: Careful, danger!
Travail et fortes chaleurs: attention, danger! [in French]
Working during heat waves is risky, particularly when it involves high physical effort while being directly exposed to the sun, as is often the case in the construction industry. This article summarizes the main precautionary measures to be adopted on building sites when the temperature exceeds 30° (check the weather forecast, inform workers on the hazards; move working hours forward; supply drinking water; ensure that workers wear loose-fitting cotton clothing; be alert to hyperthermia symptoms), together with relevant French regulations.
Prévention BTP, June 2007, No.97, p.48-50. Illus.
Preventive measures to be taken at the place of work during hot weather conditions
Les mesures de prévention à prendre en cas de fortes chaleurs dans les lieux de travail [in French]
Exposure to heat at the place of work can cause serious health problems and accidents, possibly leading to death, particularly during outdoor work, such as among construction workers or during road inspection and cleaning. In order to ensure work under acceptable conditions, employers are required to take preventive measures as far upstream as possible. This article summarizes the main provisions of French regulations that apply to work during hot weather conditions, concerning the requirement that employers implement individual and organizational preventive measures as a function of weather conditions, applicable to both workplaces and working conditions.
Santé et Sécurité au Travail Actualités, May 2007, No.100, p.10.
Kim T.G., Tochihara Y., Fujita M., Hashiguchi N.
Physiological responses and performance of loading work in a severely cold environment
In this study, physiological responses and manual performance were measured during loading work in a severely cold environment. Eight volunteer male subjects wearing standard cold-protective clothing occupied a 20°C room for 20min, and were then transferred to an extremely cold room (-25°C) for 30min. This pattern of exposure was repeated three times. In the cold room, the subjects transported 9kg goods (condition R1) and 18kg goods (condition R2) for 10 min, and performed no work (condition C). At the end of the cold exposure, rectal, mean skin and mean body temperatures in conditions R2 and R1 were higher than in condition C. Cold stress declined due to an increase in heat production during work as confirmed by the subjects who reported less cold sensation with loading work. Other findings are discussed.
International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics, 2007, Vol.37, p.725-732. Illus. 19 ref.
Working in hot environments
Trabajando en ambientes muy calurosos [in Spanish]
Spanish translation of the booklet indexed under CIS 86-1263. It provides an overview of the health hazards associated with hot workplaces and alerts employers and workers them to the precautions that should be taken to prevent injuries and other health problems due to heat stress.
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, 4676 Columbia Parkway, Cincinnati, OH 45226-1998, USA, 2007. iii, 12p. 4 ref.
http://www.cdc.gov/spanish/niosh/docs/pdfs/86-112sp.pdf [in Spanish]
Preventing heat stress at work
Ngan Ngua Duoi Suc Vi Nong Tai Noi Lam VIec [in Vietnamese]
Prevención del estrés térmico en el trabajo [in Spanish]
Many jobs require working in hot environments. Working in the heat and doing heavy physical work can affect the body's cooling system and lead to heat stress. If heat stress is not recognized and treated in the early stages, more serious and possibly fatal conditions can develop rapidly. This booklet provides a basic overview of factors that increase the risk of heat stress, how to recognize and treat heat stress and how to prevent heat stress.
Workers' Compensation Board of British Columbia, Richmond, British Columbia, Canada, 2007. iii, 20p. Illus.
http://www.worksafebc.com/publications/health_and_safety/by_topic/assets/pdf/heat_stress.pdf [in English]
http://www.worksafebc.com/publications/translated_publications/assets/pdf/chinese/heat_stress_chinese.pdf [in Chinese]
http://www.worksafebc.com/publications/high_resolution_publications/assets/pdf/translated/punjabi/BK30p.pdf [in Punjabi]
http://www.worksafebc.com/publications/high_resolution_publications/assets/pdf/translated/spanish/BK30s.pdf [in Spanish]
http://www.worksafebc.com/publications/high_resolution_publications/assets/pdf/bk30v.pdf [in Vietnamese]
Ambient factors in the workplace
Al-a)awamal al-muḥīṭa fī makān al-a)amal [in Arabic]
Arabic translation of the ILO code of practice abstracted as CIS 01-1814. It provides recommendations and guidelines for assessing, eliminating and controlling hazardous ambient factors in the workplace. It provides guidance on the roles and obligations of competent authorities and the responsibilities, duties and rights of employers, workers and all other parties involved to prevent illness and injury among workers. It reviews the various aspects of prevention and control of each ambient factor (hazardous substances, ionizing radiation, electric and magnetic fields, optical radiation, heat and cold, noise, vibration) and provides guidance on hazard assessment and prevention, surveillance of workers' health and workers' information and training.
ILO Publications, International Labour Office, 1211 Genève 22, Switzerland, 2006. xviii, 131p. 33 ref.
http://www.ilo.org/public/libdoc/ilo/2001/101B09_193_arab.pdf [in Arabic]
Chiarello P., Scatena Sobrinho P., Campanelli Marçal Vieira M.N., Diez Garcia R.W.
Protein-energy supplements to preserve nutritional status of sugar cane cutters
Sugar cane cutters in south-eastern Brazil are temporarily hired for the harvest period of eight months. They often have minimal benefits and may not receive adequate nutrition. The aim of this study was to evaluate alterations in weight and body composition of sugar cane cutters during harvest with the use of protein-energy and electrolyte supplements. Three products were used daily: a milk drink, a seasoned manioc meal mixture and an electrolyte replacement fluid, adding approx. 400kcal and 28.5g of protein/day. There were small reductions in body mass index and percentage body fat with maintenance of lean mass. There was a significant improvement in hydration status, serum albumin and cholesterol. There were no medical absences related to dehydration. These supplements may have a useful role to play in reducing lean mass losses and maintaining nutritional and hydration status of these workers.
Occupational Medicine, Dec. 2006, Vol.56, No.8, p.575-577. 9 ref.
Lindgren T., Andersson K., Norbäck D.
Perception of cockpit environment among pilots on commercial aircraft
Impaired cockpit environment may influence both well-being and performance of pilots. The purpose of this study was to assess the perception of cockpit environment among pilots in relation to demographic factors and type of aircraft. A standardized questionnaire was mailed to all pilots of one airline, among whom 622 responded (81%). Multiple logistic regression analysis was applied, controlling for age, gender, smoking, perceived psychosocial work environment and type of aircraft. Younger age, a history of atopy and stress due to excess work were the main predictors of symptoms and cockpit environment perceptions. The most common symptoms were fatigue, facial dermal and nasal symptoms. Other findings are discussed.
Aviation, Space, and Environmental Medicine, Aug. 2006, Vol.77, No.8, p.832-837. 13 ref.
Flyvholm M.A., Lindberg M.
OEESC-2005 - Summing up on the theme of irritants and wet work
This article reviews the papers on irritants and wet work presented at a conference on held in Stockholm, Sweden, on 12-15 June 2005. Occupational skin diseases are common diseases with a huge potential for prevention. The risk factors are mostly well known, despite which there is an ongoing high occurrence of occupational skin diseases. The following topics were identified for further research: an internationally agreed-upon definition of wet work; better methods to assess the exposure to wet work; effect of combined exposure to water and water-soluble irritants; effect of wet work with short and long cycles; testing skin protection and skin care products; long-term skin effects from alcohol-based hand disinfectants; workplace testing of evidence-based prevention programmes in prospective randomized, controlled intervention studies.
Contact Dermatitis, Dec. 2006, Vol.55, No.6, p.317-321.
McLellan T.M., Selkirk G.A.
The management of heat stress for firefighters: A review of work conducted on behalf of the Toronto fire service
This article summarizes research projects aimed at defining safe work limits for firefighters wearing protective clothing and working in warm environments. It examines strategies for reducing the thermal burden and extending operational effectiveness. Subjects wore their protective ensemble and carried their self-contained breathing apparatus and performed very light, light, moderate or heavy work at 25°C, 30°C and 35°C. Predicted continuous work times were then generated using a heat strain model that established limits for increases in body temperature to 38.0°C, 38.5°C and 39.0°C. The study revealed that replacing the duty uniform pants with shorts reduced the thermal strain for activities that lasted longer than 60 min. Adequate fluid replacement and forearm and hand immersion, increased exposure time (and work productivity) by 100%.
Industrial Health, July 2006, Vol.44, No.3, p.414-426. Illus. 67 ref.
http://www.jniosh.go.jp/old/niih/en/indu_hel/2006/pdf/indhealth_44_3_414.pdf [in English]
Meijer E.M., Sluiter J.K., Frings-Dresen M.H.W.
What is known about temperature and complaints in the upper extremity? A systematic review in the VDU work environment
Upper extremity musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) are frequently reported among visual display units (VDU) workers. These complaints include cold forearms, hands or fingers. The aim of this literature survey was to examine the relationship between objective and subjective temperature decrease and MSDs in the upper extremity in the VDU work environment by internal or external cooling of the arm and hand. It was found that forearm, hand and finger temperature are significantly dependent on the ambient temperature. However, it was concluded that no consistent evidence is available for the association between upper extremity MSDs and temperature changes in the forearm, hand or fingers in an office work environment.
International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health, June 2006, Vol.79, No.6, p.445-452. 38 ref.
Dessureault P.C., Gressard B.
Data collection and verification of the agreement between the corrected air temperature and the WBGT in outdoor thermal environments
Cueillette de données et vérification de la concordance entre la température de l'air corrigée et l'indice WBGT sous des ambiances thermiques extérieures [in French]
The objective of this study was to verify the correspondence between the method for corrected air temperature proposed in a heat stroke prevention guide based on the corrected air temperature and the WBGT (Wet Bulb Globe Temperature) normally used in workplaces. It was found that when the air temperature is read in the workplace, use of the corrected air temperature obtained after application of correction factors for humidity and sunshine is very conservative and often even overestimates the level of thermal stress expressed by the WBGT measured in the same location. However, strenuous work under cloudy conditions is an exception, with a 23% underestimation of the exposure. This study proposes that use of the guide should therefore be limited to light and moderately-strenuous medium work. Several recommendations are made to improve and simplify the processes proposed in the guide.
Institut de recherche Robert-Sauvé en santé et en sécurité du travail du Québec (IRSST), 505 boul. de Maisonneuve Ouest, Montreal (Quebec) H3A 3C2, Canada, 2006. iii, 20p. Illus. 12 ref. Price: CAD 7.42. Downloadable version (PDF format) free of charge.
http://www.irsst.qc.ca/files/documents/PubIRSST/R-476.pdf [in French]
Sormunen E., Oksa J., Pienimäki T., Rissanen S., Rintamäki H.
Muscular and cold strain of female workers in meatpacking work
The purpose of this cross-sectional study was to investigate muscular strain and thermal responses among women working in cold working environments at a large meat processing factory. Measurements were performed among 18 healthy women during their normal work tasks at temperatures of 4-10°C. Muscular strain in the upper extremities and the shoulders was measured by continuous electromyography (EMG). Relative muscular strain was calculated from EMG activity during work in relation to maximal EMG activity measured during maximal voluntary contraction. Skin and rectal temperatures were measured continuously. Findings are discussed. Working in cooled departments decreased skin temperatures most in the shoulder region, fingers and lower extremities. However, the association between skin temperatures and muscular strain was not statistically significant. Muscular strain was mainly related to the intensity of repetitive movements.
International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics, August 2006, Vol.36, No.8, 713-720. Illus. 31 ref.
Electricians' perception of work-related risks in cold climate when working in high places
Work on telecommunications and electricity transmission masts can be especially demanding in cold winter climates. This study sought to evaluate workers' perception of work-related risks in the above conditions with special reference to the use of hand tools. A questionnaire and interviews about workers' risk perception were used. A total of 170 questionnaires were sent, of which 118 were returned. Six respondents were also interviewed. It is concluded that in both the telecommunications and electricity transmission sectors, tools, ice and equipment falling from masts were the greatest perceived risks, and preventing such occurrences is the key to any improvement of safety.
International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics, July 2006, Vol.36, No.7, p.661-670. Illus. 35 ref.
Ganem Y., Pomian J.L., Laborde L., Brasseur G.
Thermal environments: Work in the cold
Ambiances thermiques: travailler au froid [in French]
This review article on cold workplaces provides occupational physicians with reference points for realistic, tangible and practical occupational safety and health measures that take into account individual differences and that consider the issue of workplace design or modification. Contents: effects of cold on the body; potential health hazards; first aid measures in case of hypothermia; risk factors and hazard evaluation; recommendations and preventive measures. A simple method for evaluating the thermal environment during cold spells is proposed, based on the wind-cooling index.
Documents pour le médecin du travail, 3rd Quarter 2006, No.107, p.279-295. Illus. 45 ref.
http://www.dmt-prevention.fr/inrs-pub/inrs01.nsf/IntranetObject-accesParReference/TC%20109/$File/TC109.pdf [in French]
Freeze a jolly good fellow
Although there is no legal minimum temperature (at least for indoor workplaces) below which employees should not work, it is important to be aware of the effects of cold on the body and to know what to provide in terms of personal protective equipment, welfare facilities and first-aid treatment. This article discusses these requirements. Topics covered: effects of cold on the body; dry cold and wet cold environments; assessing the precise nature of the environment; selection of appropriate clothing; personnel selection according to potential health problems.
Safety and Health Practitioner, May 2006, Vol.24, No.5, p.51-54. Illus.
Marchand D., Tremblay G., Tellier C.
Evaluation of the physical constraints associated with the wearing of different personal protective clothing for fire fighters
Evaluation des contraintes physiques associées au port de différents vêtements individuels de protection des pompiers [in French]
Heat stress is the main cause of death for fire fighters. Their protective clothing produces risks of thermal reaction, in addition to being the cause of accidents due to its bulkiness and its inadequacy for the task. In response to a request from the City of Montreal, several studies were undertaken to compare different types of uniforms. This study evaluates the physical stresses related to the wearing of firefighters' protective clothing based on psychophysical perception, oxygen consumption, heart rate, skin temperature, electromyography and humidity. It resulted in a classification of the uniforms, which can be used as a reference for fire brigades in choosing uniforms with the fewest stresses.
Institut de recherche Robert-Sauvé en santé et en sécurité du travail (IRSST), 505 boul. de Maisonneuve Ouest, Montreal (Quebec) H3A 3C2, Canada, 2006. xvi, 137p. Illus. 60 ref. + CD-ROM. Price: CAD 13.00. Downloadable version (pdf format) free of charge.
http://www.irsst.qc.ca/files/documents/PubIRSST/R-444.pdf [in French]
Gebhardt H., Müller B.H.
Bundesanstalt für Arbeitsschutz und Arbeitsmedizin
Assessment of radiant heating systems (tube heaters)
Bewertung von Strahlungsheizungen (Dunkelstrahler) [in German]
This report presents the results of laboratory tests of tube heaters. Measurements of convective and radiant heat transfer were carried out at ambient temperatures of between -2°C to +15°C, while simultaneously changing the strenuousness of the tasks, work postures (sitting or standing) and tube intensities. The evaluations took account of physiological effects and subjective assessments. Findings are discussed.
Wirtschaftsverlag NW, Postfach 10 11 10, 27511 Bremerhaven, Germany, 2005. 72p. Illus. 58 ref. Price: EUR 11.00.
Hope A., Hjelle J., Aanderud L., Aakvaag A.
Time and temperature effects on body fluid loss during dives with the open hot-water suit
Bodyweight (BW) losses up to 5kg have been observed during diving with open hot-water suits (HWSs). The objective of the two series of dives performed in this study was to examine hormonal, haematological and dehydration effects during shallow HWS diving. Changes in thermal stress, haemoglobin, haematocrit, aldosterone and electrolyte excretion correlated with BW reduction. BW loss during HWS diving is mainly caused by sweating. Dives of 4h produce an isotonic dehydration. Therefore a break for fluid intake is recommended.
Aviation, Space, and Environmental Medicine, July 2005, Vol.76, No.7, Section I, p.655-660. Illus. 13 ref.
Bernard T.E., Luecke C.L., Schwartz S.W., Kirkland K.S., Ashley C.D.
WBGT clothing adjustments for four clothing ensembles under three relative humidity levels
Threshold limit values for heat stress and strain are based on an upper wet bulb globe temperature (WBGT) for ordinary work clothes, with clothing adjustment factors (CAFs) for other types of clothes. This study investigated CAFs for various types of coveralls against a baseline of cotton work clothes and examined the potential effect of relative humidity. A climatic chamber was used to slowly increase the level of heat stress by increasing air temperature at three levels of relative humidity (20%, 50% and 70%). Study participants wore one of five ensembles while walking on a treadmill at a moderate metabolic rate. Physiological and environmental data were collected. CAFs are proposed for each type of coverall.
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene, May 2005, Vol.2, No.5, p.251-256. Illus. 16 ref.
Mohamed S., Srinavin K.
Forecasting labor productivity changes in construction using the PMV index
Many attempts have been made to establish mathematical models reflecting the relationship between the thermal environment and construction labour productivity. This article briefly describes and highlights the main shortcomings of three established thermal environment productivity forecasting models. It introduces a fourth model, where productivity can be predicted as a function of the predicted mean vote (PMV) index. It then presents a comparative analysis between all four models with emphasis on their sensitivity to air temperature. Field data collected from various construction sites demonstrate that observed productivity data agree well with those predicted by the PMV-based model.
International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics, Apr. 2005, Vol.35, No.4, p.345-351. Illus. 19 ref.
Powell S., Davies A., Bunn J., Bethea D.
Health and Safety Executive
The effects of thermal environments on the risks associated with manual handling
Manual handling injuries are a major occupational health problem. The risk factors associated with manual handling in hot and cold environments were identified as a gap in knowledge under the HSE's priority programme for musculoskeletal disorders (MDS's). At present, the manual handling guidance does not offer specific guidance regarding manual handling in non-neutral thermal environments other than to say that extremes of temperature and humidity should be avoided. Two experiments were designed to assess the effects of non-neutral thermal environments on manual handling. For the purposes of this study, a cold environment was defined as between 0-10°C (44-60% relative humidity) and a hot environment as between 29-39°C (25-72% relative humidity). The results and implications of this experimental work are discussed.
HSE Books, P.O. Box 1999, Sudbury, Suffolk CO10 2WA, United Kingdom, 2005. x, 105p. Illus. 99 ref. Price: GBP 25.00. Downloadable version free of charge.
http://www.hse.gov.uk/research/rrpdf/rr337.pdf [in English]
Bang B.E., Aasmoe L., Aardal L., Andorsen G.S., Bjørnbakk A.K., Egeness C., Espejord I., Kramvik E.
Feeling cold at work increases the risk of symptoms from muscles, skin and airways in seafood industry workers
Norwegian workers in seafood industry plants are exposed to a cold and often wet environment. This study on the relationship between feeling cold at work and the risk of muscular, skin and airway symptoms involved 1767 seafood industry workers, who responded to a questionnaire. In addition, thermal measurements were carried out in 17 seafood industry plants. 15.9% of production workers and 1.7% of administrative workers reported that they often felt cold at work. Mean finger temperatures after one hour of work varied between 16 and 22°C. Foot temperature dropped from morning until lunch time in 85% of the measurements. Production workers who reported that they often felt cold had significantly increased prevalence of symptoms from muscles, skin, and airways while working, compared to workers who reported that they never felt cold at work.
American Journal of Industrial Medicine, Jan. 2005, Vol.47, No.1, p.65-71. Illus. 23 ref.
Rouilleault H., Guérin F., Gilles M., Molinié A.F., Rousseau T., Rogez I.
Reducing work strenuousness
Réduire la pénibilité au travail [in French]
Collection of articles on work strenuousness. Topics addressed: forms and sources of strenuous work (repetitive physical efforts, exposure to heat or noise, work schedules and speed of work); negotiations on strenuousness in the context of changes to the law on retirement; opinions of various experts on issues including the definition of strenuousness, strenuousness indicators, the relationship between strenuousness and age, and the prevention of strenuous working conditions; evaluation of strenuousness among garbage collectors, women office workers and in the automobile industry; ageing and strenuousness; main points to consider with respect to the prevention of strenuous working conditions; further reading.
Travail & changement, Feb.-Mar. 2004, No.294, p.1-15 (whole issue). Illus. Bibl.ref.
http://www.actal.aract.fr/RessourcesSite/TC/TC294.pdf [in French]
Hypothermia - Surviving the cold
Working in a cold environment is part of the job for many British Columbia workers, who face the risk of hypothermia. This booklet provides a basic understanding of when and why hypothermia occurs, how to protect oneself against hypothermia, how to recognize the onset of hypothermia and how to treat victims of hypothermia.
Workers' Compensation Board of British Columbia, Richmond, British Columbia, Canada, 2004. 12p. Illus.
http://www.worksafebc.com/publications/health_and_safety/by_topic/assets/pdf/hypothermia.pdf [in English]
Ministério do Trabalho e Emprego
Workers' magazine: Traditional measurement of heat exposure
Revista do trabalhador: Conjunto convencional para calor [in Portuguese]
This videotape describes the health hazards for workers exposed to excessive heat and shows how to install traditional equipment for evaluating worker's exposure to heat by determining Wet Bulb Globe Temperature (WBGT).
Fundacentro, Rua Capote Valente 710, São Paulo, SP 05409-002, Brazil, [ca 2004]. Videotape (VHS format), 12min.
Selkirk G.A., McLellan T.M.
Physical work limits for Toronto firefighters in warm environments
This study examined the relationship between tolerance time and metabolic rate for three different environmental temperatures (25°C, 30°C, and 35°C, 50% relative humidity) in a group of firefighters wearing firefighting protective clothing (FPC) and self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA). Thirty-seven firefighters (33 male and four female) were divided into four work groups defined as heavy, moderate, light and very light according to the strenuousness of a treadmill exercise performed while wearing FPC and SCBA. Findings show the differential impact of environmental conditions at various metabolic rates on tolerance time. Results reveal that passive recovery may not be sufficient to reduce body temperature below pre-recovery levels when working at higher metabolic rates in hot environments.
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene, Apr. 2004, Vol.1, No.4, p.199-212. Illus. 49 ref.
Hayashi C., Tokura H.
The effects of two kinds of masks (with or without exhaust valve) on clothing microclimates inside the mask in participants wearing protective clothing for spraying pesticides
This study examined the effects of wearing two types of protective mask on the microclimate (temperature, humidity) inside the mask, physiological parameters and subjective sensations. Five healthy female students performed an intermittent step exercise while wearing the mask in a climate chamber at 28°C and 60% relative humidity. One mask was made of non-woven fabric and had no exhaust valve (mask A), and the other had an exhaust valve (mask B). Microclimate temperature, microclimate humidity and cheek skin temperature inside the mask were significantly lower in mask B than in mask A. Body temperature also increased more slowly with mask B. Mechanisms of heat loss are discussed.
International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health, Jan. 2004, Vol.77, No.1, p.73-78. Illus. 16 ref.
Marszałek A., Smolander J., Sołtyński K.
Age-related thermal strain in men while wearing radiation protective clothing during short-term exercise in the heat
The aim of this study was to compare heat strain among different age groups of men wearing protective clothing during short-term physical work. Eight young (20-29 years), six middle-aged (41-55 years) and eight older (58-65 years) men exercised for 30 min on a cycle ergometer in two hot environments with a similar WBGT, once with minimal clothing without infrared radiation (E1), and once while wearing aluminized protective clothing under infrared radiation (E2). All subjects had sedentary jobs, but only the older subjects were physically active in their leisure-time. Body temperatures, heart rate, sweat rate and subjective feelings were determined during the tests. Higher thermal strain was observed in E2 than in E1. No age-related differences in thermal strain were observed in either experiment indicating that active older men can tolerate short work periods with protective clothing in the heat as well as younger sedentary men.
International Journal of Occupational Safety and Ergonomics, 2004, Vol.10, No.4, p.361-367. Illus. 26 ref.
Hot working conditions
Travail à la chaleur [in French]
This article presents the basic principles of work in hot environments, as well as the relevant European regulations and the indices which enable the prediction of thermal comfort and stress. Rather than attempting to systematically quantify the conditions of work in hot environments, it recommends following a general strategy of managing the thermal environment at the place of work with the involvement of workers, supervisory staff and occupational hygiene specialists. The four phases of this approach are outlined, together with the main prevention principles. Finally, the health hazards and their means of prevention through the selection, training, acclimatization and supervision of exposed persons are addressed.
Encyclopédie médico-chirurgicale, Toxicologie-Pathologie professionnelle, 3rd Quarter 2004, No.144, 14p. 31 ref.
Bittel J., Savourey G.
Cold working conditions
Travail au froid [in French]
Severe accidents due to cold working environments can often be avoided by proper preventive efforts. However, routine work in cold environments may present hazards of greater or lesser severity, both outdoors and in industrial premises. The main local effects of exposure to cold are frostbite and peripheral non-freezing cold injury neuropathies; less severe disorders or pathologies include local pain, cold urticaria, chilblains, arcocyanosis and numbness of the extremities. The main general effect is hypothermia, which causes loss of consciousness and coma, possibly leading to death. The key elements for preventing accidents due to exposure to cold include keeping physically fit, following a suitable diet, developing adaptive capabilities, wearing appropriate protective clothing and implementing suitable methods of work organization.
Encyclopédie médico-chirurgicale, Toxicologie-Pathologie professionnelle, 3rd Quarter 2004, No.144, 10p. 37 ref.
Ganem Y., Meyer J.P., Luzeaux N., Brasseur G., Laborde L., Pomian J.L.
Thermal environments: Work during hot spells
Ambiances thermiques: travail en période de fortes chaleurs [in French]
As a result of the heat wave of 2003, many questions were raised concerning the health effects of work in hot environments and possible preventive measures. An information package was put together and published on the French Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (INRS) website. However, it became apparent that this information needed to be further developed and a multidisciplinary working group was established to prepare the present information and guidance document. Contents: thermal comfort; epidemiological data; risk factors; adaptation to heat and effect of heat on humans; prevention measures (working conditions, work organization, selective measures that may be implemented by employers, personal lifestyle measures, technical measures); legal aspects.
Documents pour le médecin du travail, 1st Quarter 2004, No.97, p.51-68. Illus. 54 ref.
http://www.dmt-prevention.fr/inrs-pub/inrs01.nsf/IntranetObject-accesParReference/DMT_TC%2097/$File/Visu.html [in French]
Selkirk G.A., McLellan T.M., Wong J.
Active versus passive cooling during work in warm environments while wearing firefighting protective clothing
This study examined whether active or passive cooling during intermittent work reduced the heat strain associated with wearing firefighting protective clothing (FPC) and self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) in the heat (35°C, 50% relative humidity). Fifteen male Toronto firefighters participated in the study. Subjects walked at 4.5km/h with 0% elevation on an intermittent work (50min) and rest (30min) schedule. Work continued until rectal temperature reached 39.5°C or heart rate (HR) reached 95% of maximum or exhaustion. One of three cooling strategies, forearm submersion in water, mister, and passive cooling were employed during the rest phases. Findings suggest that there is a definite advantage when utilizing forearm submersion compared with other methods of active or passive cooling while wearing FPC and SCBA in the heat.
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene, Aug. 2004, Vol.1, No.8, p.521-531. Illus. 42 ref.
The use of footwear insulation values measured on a thermal foot model
The use of physiological data from human tests in modelling should consider background data, such as activity, environmental factors and clothing insulation on the whole body. This article focuses on the local thermal comfort of feet and on a special method for footwear thermal testing. It allows the use of insulation values acquired on a thermal foot model. The correlations between cold and pain sensations on one hand, and foot skin temperatures on the other, are described and related to the insulation measured on a thermal foot model. Recommendations are made for footwear choice as a function of environmental temperatures.
International Journal of Occupational Safety and Ergonomics, 2004, Vol.10, No.1, p.79-86. Illus. 38 ref.
Heat illness in the U.S. mining industry
Heat illness is relatively common in the underground mines of South Africa and Australia, but there have been no studies of heat illness in the mining industry of the United States. Mine Safety and Health Administration accident, injury, illness and employment data were used to study heat illness reported from 1983 to 2001. 538 cases of heat illness were reported, none of which were fatal. 427 cases (79.4%) occurred in the months of June, July and August. Incidence rates in underground mining ranged from 0.00275/106 person-hours for coal mining to 0.168/106 person-hours for metal mining. In surface mining, they ranged from 0.0265/106 person-hours for coal to 0.0644/106 person-hours for stone. Finally in mills and preparation plants, they ranged from 0.0255/106 person-hours for coal to 0.417/106 person-hours for stone.
American Journal of Industrial Medicine, Apr. 2004, Vol.45, No.4, p.351-356. 25 ref.
Advice to expatriates - Sub-Saharan Africa
Conseils aux expatriés - Afrique subsaharienne [in French]
A growing number of enterprises assign their personnel to postings abroad for varying durations. Occupational physicians need to ensure the safety and health of staff against the hazards related to these foreign postings. This article describes the protective measures that apply to Sub-Saharan African locations, and addresses the following topics: measures to be taken before travelling (vaccinations, prevention of sinusitis, first aid kits, traveller's medical kit); disorders that may arise during the trip (disorders related to air travel, in particular the "economy class syndrome"); precautions to be taken on arrival (measures against heat and sunlight); possible risks during the stay (road accidents, diarrhoea, malaria, dengue, sexually-transmitted diseases, rabies); what to do on return in the event of disorders; advice for pregnant women.
Cahiers de médecine interprofessionnelle, 2004, Vol.44, No.1, p.17-25. 7 ref.
Wästerlund D.S., Chaseling J., Burström L.
The effect of fluid consumption on the forest workers' performance strategy
The heart rate and fluid consumption of four Zimbabwean forest workers engaged in manual harvesting were studied. Each worker was studied during eight consecutive working days. They consumed either 0.17L or 0.6L of water each half hour with one fluid scheme assigned to each day according to a randomized block design. All four workers were found to harvest large trees at the start of the working day and small trees at the end. All took longer to complete their task when on the low fluid scheme. However, the effect on the heart rate development varied for the individual workers as the strategies adopted to accommodate the stress inflicted by the low fluid scheme varied for the individual workers. It is recommended that sufficient fluid supply during work be accompanied by information of the workers on the needs and benefits of sufficient fluid consumption.
Applied Ergonomics, Jan. 2004, Vol.35, No.1, p.29-36. Illus. 23 ref.
Kunz I., Jost M., Rast H., Vogel M.
Occupational medicine in the tunnels of the new railway lines across the Alps
Arbeitsmedizinische Vorsorge bei Arbeitnehmern im Neat-Tunnelbau [in German]
Prévention en médecine du travail dans les tunnels des NLFA [in French]
Two important construction sites are currently active in Switzerland for building railway tunnels under the Alps. Given the depth of these tunnels, rock temperatures fluctuate between 40 and 50°C, resulting in difficult working conditions. Workers are also subjected to the risks that are inherent in tunnel construction, namely exposures to quartz, noise, diesel fumes, vibration and occasionally hyperbaric pressure. SUVA has defined a set of occupational health guidelines for the prevention of occupational diseases at these worksites. This article describes the screening and follow-up medical checks required for these workers and comments on practical experience with respect to medical examinations on these sites.
Informations médicales - Medizinische Mitteilungen, Spring 2003, No.74, p.45-55. Illus. 4 ref.
http://wwwitsp1.suva.ch/sap/its/mimes/waswo/99/pdf/02869-74-f.pdf [in French]
http://wwwitsp1.suva.ch/sap/its/mimes/waswo/99/pdf/02869-74-d.pdf [in German]
Rantanen J., Valkeapää L., Maltsev O., Maltseva E., Pekkarinen A., Pyy L., Lehtinen S.
Occupational health and safety of indigenous people in the Nordic countries and Russia
Collection of articles on occupational safety and health among indigenous populations in the Nordic countries and Russia. Topics covered: reindeer husbandry as the main livelihood of indigenous populations of Northern Finland; training for jobs in state and municipal administrations among indigenous minorities in the North of Murmansk region; research needs to improve the working conditions of reindeer herders; review of the ICOH conference held in Iguassu, Brazil, 23-28 February 2003.
Barents - Newsletter on Occupational Health and Safety, 2003, Vol.6, No.1, p.3-27 (whole issue). Illus. 7 ref.
http://www.ttl.fi/NR/rdonlyres/16E6776B-D8B8-4AE3-9A4F-3B95F9B456AB/0/barents03_1.pdf [in English]
Ando H., Noguchi R.
Dependence of palmar sweating response and central nervous system activity on the frequency of whole-body vibration
Palmar sweating volume was measured on the right palm of six healthy men before and during three minutes of exposure to sinusoidal whole-body vibration at three different frequencies (16, 31.5, and 63Hz). The whole-body vibration had a frequency-weighted, root mean square acceleration magnitude of 2.0m/s2. As an indicator of the activated central sympathetic nervous system, the saliva level of 3-methoxy-4-hydroxyphenylglycol (MHPG) was analysed before and immediately after each vibration exposure. Each vibration frequency induced a palmar sweating response, that of 31.5Hz being the largest. Saliva MHPG increased in all the vibration exposures, and the largest change was observed at 31.5Hz.
Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment and Health, June 2003, Vol.29, No.3, p.216-219. Illus. 19 ref.
Küpper T., Steffgen J., Jansing P.
Cold exposure during helicopter rescue operations in the Western Alps
The study evaluates exposure to the cold of personnel involved in helicopter rescue operations in an alpine environment. Rescue operations over a period of 15 months in the Oberwallis region (Switzerland) were analysed with special regard to the weather conditions, the altitude of the rescue site and the duration of on-site rescue operation. Mean exposure as well as the worst-case situation (based on maximum wind speed) were calculated. The results were evaluated according to various models, standards and regulations for work in cold environments. Because of the limited time of exposure during the majority of the operations, the most important danger for rescue personnel is frostbite, although hypothermia cannot be excluded in cases of prolonged operations. Special advice to avoid the specific risks must be given to the crews and an examination by an occupational physician is recommended. Recommendations for adequate clothing are also given.
Annals of Occupational Hygiene, Jan. 2003, Vol.47, No.1, p.7-16. Illus. 22 ref.
Bundesanstalt für Arbeitsschutz und Arbeitsmedizin
Manual of thermal comfort - Heating periods
Handbuch der thermischen Behaglichkeit - Heizperiode [in German]
This manual consists of a decision-support tool for selecting appropriate heating systems for office and residential buildings. It is aimed at building proprietors, architects, physicists, engineers and designers specialized in the technical equipment of buildings, as well as at hygienists, safety specialists and scientists working in the field of thermal comfort. Contents: thermal comfort principles and criteria; work algorithms; limiting and constraining conditions; overview of the study parameters; diagrams illustrating thermal comfort of highly diverse structures and equipment; graphical representations; analysis of the results based on comfort comparisons.
Wirtschaftsverlag NW, Postfach 10 11 10, 27511 Bremerhaven, Germany, 2003. 368p. Illus. 36 ref. Price: EUR 27.00.
Guide for safety assessors on hot work certification
This guide provides guidelines for safety assessors appointed under Regulation 35(3) of the Factories (Shipbuilding and Ship-repairing) Regulations (CIS 00-12) for the purpose of certification of hot work areas in relation to the issuing of work permits. Contents: definitions; relevant regulations; duties and responsibilities of safety assessors; hot work endorsement; validity of the hot work permit; other conditions to be observed by the safety assessor during hot work inspection; recording of inspections; general guidelines on the use of a combustible gas detector. In appendices: extracts from relevant regulations, sample forms of a hot work permit and of a record of failed inspection; safety checklists.
Association of Singapore Marine Industries (ASMI), Singapore, Republic of Singapore, 2003. 22p.
Brake D.J., Bates G.P.
Fluid losses and hydration status of industrial workers under thermal stress working extended shifts
This study examined the fluid consumption, sweat rates and changes in the hydration state of 39 male underground miners in northern Australia on extended shifts under significant levels of thermal stress (WGBT>28°C). Urinary specific gravity was measured before, during and at the completion of the working shift. Environmental conditions were measured hourly during the shift. Fluid replacement was measured during the working periods and during the meal breaks. It was found that dehydration did not occur in well-informed workers. Fluid replacement during meal breaks was not significantly increased above fluid replacement rates during work time. Urinary specific gravity was found to be a good indication of hydration status and a practical method for improving workforce awareness and understanding of this important risk factor.
Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Feb. 2003, Vol.60, No.2, p.90-96. Illus. 44 ref.
Jones B., Brenkley D., Jozefowicz R.R., Whitaker J., Shotton J., Booth A.P.
Health and Safety Executive
Use of self-rescuers in hot and humid mines
The concept of self-rescue is based on the assumption that underground mineworkers have the required physical and mental capacities. However, there is insufficient knowledge concerning the personal endurance limits associated with the extended wearing of mining industry respiratory protective devices under high physiological stress conditions. In response to these issues, a research programme was defined, consisting of a literature review, an audit of climatic conditions, laboratory investigations and climatic chamber respiratory equipment wearing trails. This work has provided a wider understanding of the physiological response to the wearing of escape respiratory protective devices under hot and humid conditions, enabling recommendations to be made with respect to the selection and use of self-rescuers appropriate to the prevailing deep mine conditions in the United Kingdom.
HSE Books, P.O. Box 1999, Sudbury, Suffolk CO10 2WA, United Kingdom, 2003. vi, 147p. Illus. Bibl.ref. Price: GBP 30.00.
http://www.hse.gov.uk/research/rrpdf/rr180.pdf ((sections1-3)) [in English]
http://www.hse.gov.uk/research/rrpdf/rr180a.pdf ((sections4-6)) [in English]
Dessureault P.C., Doucet M.
Evaluation of heat stress in underground mines
Evaluation des indices de contrainte thermique en mines profondes [in French]
This report presents a new heat stress index entitled "Air Cooling Power" (ACP), and compares it with the required sweat rate index (ISO 7933) and the WBGT index in the hot and humid environment of underground mines. The appropriate physical parameters were measured under various typical conditions. The permissible exposure levels according to each index were compared with workers' measured heart rates. The exposure levels determined by the three indices were comparable, although several recordings showed severe strain levels. The advantages and disadvantages of the three indices are discussed, and proposals are made with respect to the definition of an improved ACP index.
Institut de recherche en santé et en sécurité du travail du Québec (IRSST), 505 boul. de Maisonneuve Ouest, Montreal, Quebec H3A 3C2, Canada, 2003. iv, 28p. Illus. 24 ref. Price: CAD 5.35.
http://www.irsst.qc.ca/htmfr/pdf_txt/R-350.pdf [in French]
Hidri A., Soltani C., Kahouach L.
Evaluation of the thermal environment in a metallic construction enterprise
Evaluation de l'ambiance thermique dans une entreprise du secteur de la construction métallique [in French]
The objective of this study was to evaluate the thermal environment in a Tunisian enterprise and to recommend measures for improving working conditions. The study was conducted at a manufacturer of aluminium tubes, where the heat sources were the annealing and polymerization ovens. Thermal environment parameters were measured and heat stress was evaluated for the various workplaces within the production area. The following recommendations were made: reduction of time of exposure; installing a refrigerated water fountain at the place of work; information of workers on the hazards related to heat stress and preventive measures; lowering of average radiant heat temperatures by replacing the gas annealing oven by an electric oven; installing an air conditioning system; mechanizing manual handling tasks.
SST - Santé et Sécurité au Travail, Oct. 2003, No.27, p.8-13. 5 ref.
Probability of survival during accidental immersion in cold water
This paper describes a theoretical approach to estimating the probability of survival during accidental immersion in cold water. The human thermal model is used to compute the central temperature during immersion in cold water. Simultaneously, a survival probability function is computed by solving a differential equation that defines how the probability of survival decreases with increasing time. The survival equation assumes that the probability of occurrence of a fatal event increases as the victim's central temperature decreases. Generally accepted views of the medical consequences of hypothermia and published reports of various accidents provide information useful for defining a "fatality function" that increases exponentially with decreasing central temperature. The particular function suggested in this paper yields a relationship between immersion time for 10% probability of survival and water temperature that agrees very well with empirical observations based on World War II data.
Aviation, Space, and Environmental Medicine, Jan. 2003, Vol.74, No.1, p.47-55. Illus. 33 ref.
Ando H., Noguchi R., Ishitake T.
Frequency dependence of hand-arm vibration on palmar sweating response
In this study on the effects of hand-arm vibration frequency on palmar sweating, sweating was measured on the right palm of six healthy men, before and during exposure of the left palm to various vibration frequencies during three minutes. The control condition consisted of grasping a handle without vibration. As an indicator of the state of activation of the central nervous system, plasma 3-methoxy-4-hydroxyphenylglycol (MHPG) was measured before and immediately after each vibration exposure. Each vibration condition induced a palmar sweating response. Among the six vibration conditions, frequencies of 125Hz and 63Hz caused large palmar sweating responses compared with those of 315Hz and the control condition. Plasma MHPG did not increase significantly after either kind of vibration exposure.
Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment and Health, Oct. 2002, Vol.28, No.5, p.324-327. Illus. 13 ref.
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