With Alabama summers being among the hottest in the United States, it’s important to be knowledgeable about what precautions to take to prevent heat related illnesses, which occur when one’s body cannot not adequately cool itself.
Examples of heat-related illnesses include heat stroke, heat exhaustion, heat rash, heat cramps and fainting. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, those with the greatest risk of suffering from a heat-related illness include those over 65 years old, people with chronic medical conditions, outdoor workers, infants and children and athletes.
Pelham Parks and Recreation Director Billy Crandall, who oversees a lot of outdoor workers, said safety meetings take place on a monthly basis and best practices while working in the sun is always discussed.
“A lot of it may seem like common sense stuff, but sometimes we don’t always use our common sense, or we might not take a break because we think we’re fine,” he said. “In most cases, you feel fine until you’re not.”
Crandall said lawn mower covers have been installed on city lawn mowers to provide extra protection from the sun, and the least labor-intensive tasks are completed during the hottest parts of the day.
The city also provides sunscreen and cooling bandanas for outdoor workers.
“They’re allowed to take a break whenever they feel like they need one and we make sure they have something to drink on the mowers,” Crandall said.
According to a heat safety handout from…
Read More: Beat the heat: Tips to avoid heat-related illnesses