Outdoor workers and workers who are outdoors periodically will be exposed to the sun and the two main hazards this presents; over exposure to UV radiation and heat stress.
Australia has the highest rate of skin cancer in the world. Despite being almost entirely preventable, skin cancer continues to affect at least one in every two Australians in their lifetime.
The amount of exposure required to cause skin cancer varies greatly from one person to another. However, in most people the risk of skin cancer increases with increasing amounts of exposure to the sun.
The workplace is a major source of exposure for many adult Australians. It is not surprising that outdoor workers who are required to spend long periods of time working in the sun, year after year, have a higher than average risk of skin cancer
Hats and hat brims should be a key element of any comprehensive sun safety program. Elliotts hat brim features include:
- Fits all major safety hat brands in one design - no need for multiple styles of hat brims for different brands
- Effective Sun Protection - provides simple but effective protection from the sun and it' harmful UV rays, helping minimise the risk of skin cancer.
- All weather protection - effective in all types of weather conditions including rain. The hat brim is manufactured using durable plastic so it does not deteriorate in wet weather.
- Heat Stress management - increasing the amount of shade available is an important part of any sun safety program. The Elliotts hat brim helps keep you cooler and therefor reduces the risk of sunstroke.
For more information on Hat Brims Click Here
There are many more elements of a Sun Safety Program. Workplace health and safety Queensland Sun Safety Measures Sun Safety Program includes:
Controlling exposure to UV radiation
Workplaces can create a sun safe environment for their workers by controlling exposure to UV radiation through the implementation of a comprehensive sun safety policy. Ways of controlling exposure include:
- increasing amount of shade available
- reorganising work schedules where possible so that outdoor tasks are done before 10.00 am and after 3.00 pm
- rotating tasks that involve direct sun exposure
- training and educating staff
- providing and ensuring workers use the appropriate personal protective equipment including appropriate protective hats, clothing (shirts with longer sleeves, collars, close weave and darker colours), sunglasses and SPF 30+ water-resistant broad-spectrum sunscreen
- ensuring workers drink plenty of cool water.
Avoiding overexposure to ultra violet radiation (UVR) is the best way to prevent skin cancer. Follow these simple steps:
- minimise time in the sun between 10.00 am and 3.00 pm
- slip on clothing
- slop on SPF 30+ sunscreen
- slap on a hat
- seek shade
- slide on sunglasses.
Slip on clothing (clothing provides constant protection from UVR whereas sunscreen will wear off) that includes:
- dark coloured fabrics such as greens, blues and reds that inhibit UV light penetration
- close weave fabrics provide the best form of sun protection, as they block out most of the UVR
- long sleeves, a collar and long loose trousers will increase the sun protection of clothing.
Clothing UPF rating
Choose fabric with a high ultra violet protection factor (UPF). The UPF rating is outlined in the Australian/New Zealand Standard 4399:1996. A fabric's UPF rating is based on how much UVR is transmitted through the fabric e.g. 45+ is excellent protection.
Slap on a hat
- a hat with a broad brim (10-12 cm) or a flap at the back to shade both the face and back of the neck and a close weave
- a hardhat with a flap and/or brim added
- avoid a hat lined with white fabric as it will reflect UVR.
Slide on sunglasses
A wrap around style is best as it will reduce UVR entering the eye from the side of the face and conforming to AS/NZS 1067:2003. For more information on Pyramex Protective Eyewear Click Here
Sunscreen is recommended as the last line of defence in addition to shade, clothing, hats and sunglasses.
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Elliotts is an Australian based designer, manufacturer and distributor of world-class quality safety gear servicing the Australasian market. Elliotts take care to only supply quality protective clothing and equipment that protect people from harm on a daily basis. Products include Specialist Safety Apparel, Welding & Workshop Protection, Gloves & Hand Protection, Safety Work wear & PPE for workers across many industries including electrical, mining, oil & gas, welding & metal fabrication, aluminium smelting, firefighting, chemical, manufacturing and construction.
For more information visit www.elliottaustralia.com.