5 Ways to Prevent Heat Illness

USC Heat Illness Prevention Image

  1. Drink plenty of water. Drink one quart of water over an hour during the work shift. Do not wait until you get thirsty. Do not drink alcohol, coffee, or soft drinks.
  2. Wear light-weight/loose-fitting clothing. Include bandana; UV-absorbent sunglasses; and a wide-brimmed hat or cap. Use of personal protective equipment (e.g., air purifying respirators, heavy work suits, etc.) may increase your susceptibility to heat illness.
  3. Take frequent breaks. Taking frequent breaks in the cool shade allows the body to recover after working in the heat.
  4. Notify your supervisor of any personal risk factors (i.e., health, weight, age, etc.) that make you more susceptible to heat related illness.
  5. Be mindful of medication side effects. Ask your health care provider or pharmacist if there are any adverse effects to being in the sun/heat while on prescription medication.
For more information, read the Heat Illness Fact Sheet. In addition, Supervisors are required by CAL/OSHA to take certain steps to protect employees from heat illness. Read more about Heat Illness for Supervisors here.