With thick fog and icy temperatures, Melbourne's last Sunday was the coldest day of the year and the coldest June day since 1985. This time of the year is the heart of winter when we see the sun for the shortest time and worksites around Australia will really feel the cold.
For all the workers having to endure these winter conditions in the coming weeks, here are some worksite tips from Safe Work Australia.
Working in Bad Weather
If you work outside, you’re at risk of exposure to bad weather conditions including storms, wind, rain, and lightning. Your workplace must have measures in place to manage the risks to your health and safety caused by bad weather, including:
- working indoors (where possible)
- postponing outside work
- providing access to shelter
- securing structures and objects and turning power off, and
- providing protective equipment, like eye protection.
Eliminating exposure to bad weather is the best protection.
Working in Cold
If you work outside, you may be at risk of exposure to extreme cold. Prolonged exposure to cold can result in hypothermia, a serious condition that requires immediate medical attention. Your workplace must have measures in place manage the risks to your health and safety caused by exposure to cold weather, including:
- providing heating, for example cab heaters
- providing protection, such as a hut or the cabin of a vehicle
- providing warm and waterproof clothing, and
- enabling workers who are not used to working in cold conditions to acclimatise.
Eliminating exposure to cold is the best protection.
For more information, check out Safe Work Australia's Working in Weather.