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New Heat Illness Prevention State Emphasis Program to Help Protect Workers from Indoor and Outdoor Heat-related Hazards Introduced by MIOSHA
July 19, 2022
LANSING, Mich. — The Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA) has introduced a State Emphasis Program to help identify and reduce exposures to indoor and outdoor heat-related hazards in the workplace.
“Whether you’re working indoors or outdoors, hot and humid conditions can pose serious risks to workers’ health, but heat-related illnesses are preventable.” said MIOSHA Director Bart Pickelman. “That’s why we're reminding employers of their responsibility to provide workplaces free of known heat-related safety and health hazards and equipping them with a plan to establish their own heat illness prevention procedures.”
The adoption of the State Emphasis Program, which follows the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration's introduction of a National Emphasis Program focused on heat hazards, allows MIOSHA to perform comprehensive inspection targeting and outreach. This includes providing compliance assistance to help raise awareness of heat illness and educate companies on the steps they can take to prevent dangerous health situations in work environments where there is a higher risk of heat illness.
Employers are encouraged to utilize MIOSHA’s sample heat illness prevention plan, which can be used as a template to establish their own heat illness prevention procedures and reduce the risk of work-related heat illness among their employees. Workplaces can also access federal OSHA’s fact sheet to protect workers from the effects of heat.
The employer sample program for heat illness and prevention was designed to address heat strain in outdoor environments, but the same principles apply to indoor environments as well. Employers are encouraged to evaluate conditions at their worksite while providing detailed procedures on how to prevent and treat heat illness, including.
- Monitoring the heat index and what to do when the heat index equals or exceeds 90°F
- Provisioning water
- Accessing cooling areas or shade
- Building heat tolerance
- Developing an emergency response
- Handling a sick employee
- Training for employees and supervisors
Learn more at www.michigan.gov/heat.
For help identifying heat-related hazards and preventing dangerous heat exposure, or to take other steps to improve your workplace’s safety and health, take advantage of MIOSHA’s free consultative services at www.michigan.gov/cetrca.