The summer heat is here and measures to prevent heat-related problems must be implemented to prevent serious injuries or death. Agricultural operations involving exposure to high temperatures, radiant heat sources, high humidity and direct physical contact with hot objects have a high potential for causing heat-related problems. Work activities conducted in hot weather, such as agriculture and construction, are likely to cause heat stress among workers exposed to high temperatures if proper protective measures against heat are not taken.
Excessive exposure to the sun and inadequate intake of water and salt may cause heat exhaustion. Heat exhaustion is usually accompanied by a normal body temperature. The symptoms of heat exhaustion are: rapid breathing, headache, cramps in the legs and abdomen, weakness, dizziness, dim vision and pale or white skin. Simple measures can be taken to prevent excessive or prolonged exposure to heat.
As a direct result of exposure to heat or sun, the blood warms and rushes to the surface capillaries of the body to cool itself. This causes deficiency in blood circulation to the vital organs such as the brain and the heart. The body tries to compensate for inadequate blood supply by causing the small veins to constrict and as a result the skin becomes pale and clammy.