Keep Employees Cool And Productive During The Hot Weather
It doesn’t happen very often in the UK, but when it does it seems we find it hard to cope, so you need to make sure you are prepared for when temperatures rise. Be careful because excessive warmth can pose health issues and create uncomfortable and unproductive working environments in offices where there’s no air conditioning (A/C), or where the A/C isn’t operating as it should.
Heat exhaustion occurs when the body’s core temperature rises above the normal 37°C (98.6°F) towards 40°C (104°F), and can be extremely dangerous and even fatal if it leads to heatstroke.
Signs of heat exhaustion include heavy sweating, which causes the levels of water and salt in the body to drop, nausea and feeling faint. Keep an eye on your people, and if you spot any of these signs take them to a cool place and give them plenty of water to drink. If they don’t feel better within half an hour they may be suffering from heat stroke and will need immediate medical attention.
Apart from the physical dangers, it has been proven that extremes of temperature can cause a dip in productivity, so keeping employees cool and comfortable is a matter for your businesses bottom-line, not just a health and safety issue.
Keeping A/C working efficiently
If you’ve kept up with A/C maintenance, then it should keep running smoothly and efficiently when it’s needed most. Waiting for a breakdown before repairs take place is a false economy and if that breakdown happens during a heat wave, you may end up having to send staff home, further denting your profit margins.
In an ideal world, maintenance should be planned and preventative, specifically designed around how a system is used. You should at least be following the manufacturer’s instructions.
Further steps to prevent breakdown and improve efficiency include the addition of ECEX Air Intake Screens where air is drawn into a building. The screens act as a pre-filter, stopping airborne debris, such as pollen and leaves, from entering the air handling unit and clogging the system.
Easily retrofitted to existing HVAC systems, ECEX Air Intake Screens have been proven to reduce energy consumption by around 5%, cut maintenance requirements by up to 75% and extend internal filter life by up to 60% – not only will you be cooler, you’ll also save money.
Top tips for keeping cool
If your place of work is too hot, the following precautions will help keep employees safe and working effectively:
- Make sure everyone keeps hydrated, the water cooler needs to be full.
- Encourage staff to keep out of the sun during the hottest point of the day – 11am to 3pm. Lunchtime spent at a desk is never good, but seeking shade is a must.
- Be mindful of keeping strenuous activity to a minimum during peak heat hours – especially in factories and workshops
- Consider moving people out of the hottest areas of the office into cooler locations and use sunshades where possible.
- Open windows at the coolest points of the day and in the rooms that are not in direct sunlight.
- Send your team home with a bottle of water, particularly those who have to travel on busy, cramped and often very hot public transport.
For more information about ECEX Air Intake Screens, click here.
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