Working in the sun

Brighter mornings, lighter nights and warmer days (well, let’s not presume anything when it comes to the temperature).

Sunburn and UV radiation are hot topics during the summer months, so it’s important to ensure they don’t burn a hole in your employees’ wellbeing (double pun intended).

That’s not to say you need to restrict your employees to the shade, but it’s all about identifying and managing the risks sunburn and UV radiation pose.

Here are nine simple steps you should take to protect your employees from the sun.

1. Keep your finger on the UV index pulse

The UV index forecasts the strength of UV radiation from the sun on any given day, in any given place. The index ranges from one to 10, with one being ‘no risk’ and working its way up to 11, which has an ‘extreme’ risk rating.

2. Plan wisely

If it’s a scorching day, try to organise the day’s workload so that your employees aren’t directly under the sun during the hottest hours.

3. Encourage breaks

Breaks are important at the best of times, but particularly so in the sun, so that employees can grab a few minutes to cool off in the shade.

4. Hydration is key

Encourage employees to take plenty of water on board. You could consider providing a water station to remind them to keep topping up.

5. Cover up

We’ve all heard of the phrase ‘less is more’, well, go against it. Encourage employees to cover up by wearing long-sleeved tops and trousers. If you or your employees are concerned about overheating, consider providing or suggesting body cooler neck wraps.

6. Optimise your hats

Provide wide-brimmed hats or fit flaps to the back of hard hats to reduce the amount of sun glaring on employees.

7. Slap on the sun cream

Don’t let sun cream slip your mind. Encourage employees to slap it on, and remind them to frequently re-apply.

8. Dish out shades

Shelter employees’ eyes from the sun by dishing out sunglasses or eye protection with a UV filter – remember to keep an eye out for the UV 400 label.

9. Early detection saves lives

Encourage employees to regularly check their skin for moles and any other changes.

Serious about sun protection

To top up your knowledge (last pun, promise!) on keeping your employees safe while working in the sun, get in touch with our Health & Safety experts on 0345 844 1111 or

And if you’re a Citation client, remember, we’re available 24/7 with our advice line.

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