Though us Brits often cross our fingers for a hot hot summer, when it comes to it can we handle the heat?
How hot is too hot to work? Unfortunately there is no law on the maximum or minimum working temperature by the government so don’t go racing off yet. It is up to employers to be reasonable, especially on those employees doing physical work it is then suggested a minimum of 16°C to 13°C, however there is no guidance for maximum temperature limit.
It is suggested that employers must stick to health & safety law which includes keeping the temperature to a comfortable level and providing fresh air.
So what can workers and employers do to keep our cool?
Wear weather appropriate clothes
In a bid to stay cool many employers are advising on suitable cooler clothing for the weather, with looser fitting clothes, lighter colours and lighter fabrics like cotton or linen.
It is important on hot days to increase your water intake, when it is hot you sweat more. Avoid caffeinated, alcoholic or sugary drinks. Keep a spray water bottle by your desk to cool down with. Evan running your hands and wrists under the cold tap will help cool your blood running through your body.
Keep windows closed
Though a breeze is nice, on hot days it is rarely breezy. By opening the window you are letting in hot air and if you are fortunate to have air conditioning you are undoing its effects.
You can also drawer the blind to keep the sun out or invest in some reflective film to reduce heat into the office through windows.
Avoid heat output
Laptops, tablets and mobile phones made from metal can absorb heat and emit heat. Most also have large batteries which can over heat, it is best to keep them out of the sun and out of your pockets and bags to avoid overheating. Turn off laptops & tablets when not in use.
Avoid the Sun
If you work outdoors try and set your day around times when it will be cooler such and making use of the longer days by working in the cooler earlier morning and later evenings. As like our neighbours do in southern Europe where they have siestas during the peak temperature hours of the day.
That lovely warm feeling that you get after a large meal, well it isn’t in your head. Your body works harder to digest a large meal making your metabolism push harder and into overdrive and increasing your core temperature. 5-6 smaller light meals throughout the day will be less toll on your digestive system.
No we do not mean the do the Limbo! However we all know that heat rises, so staying lower to the earth is the way to go. Try and go a floor lower or to a basement level if you are able to.