Summer Safety Tips for Construction – Beating the Heat – BLOG

August 10, 2020

Summer Safety Tips for Construction – Beating the Heat

I’ve blinked and somehow it is August and it is HOT out in Florida! The past few weeks we have had temperatures in the upper 90’s and just this past Friday Tampa tied its hottest temperature ever at 99 degrees. Imagine those temperatures on the top deck of a construction site with a hard hat, vest, and boots on.

If you are a field employee, this is not news to you. You know how harsh the hot summer days can be on the job site. It is important to keep some safety tips and tricks in mind during the warmer months:

Hydrate: Drink plenty of proper fluids prior to your shift and continue to drink them throughout the day. Keep water within easy access at all times. You should drink a glass every 15 minutes vs. waiting until you are thirsty. Stay away from energy drinks and soda as they dehydrate you and stick with water and electrolyte replacement drinks. Remember to keep your water in an area that is cooled or shaded as there is nothing refreshing about drinking hot water.

Dress Appropriately: Wear breathable, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing. Add a nape protector or wrap-around sun visor to maximize protection in addition to your hard hat. Always use sunscreen on any exposed skin. Believe it or not, long-sleeved shirts can actually help you stay cool in the summer and can help you avoid skin damage from harmful UV rays. If your team is working in direct sunlight, cooling towels are also a great option.

Don’t Ignore the Warning Signs: Know the warning signs associated with working in extreme heat.

Working in extreme heat can cause conditions and illnesses from cramps to life-threatening heatstroke. Make sure you are monitoring yourself and keeping an eye out for others. If you notice one of your team members exhibiting the signs below get them out of the sun and into a cool setting and alert your project superintendent right away.

Symptoms of Heat Exhaustion:

  • Headaches, dizziness, lightheadedness, fainting
  • Moist skin
  • Confusion
  • Upset stomach, vomiting

Symptoms of Heat Stroke:

  • Confusion
  • Slurred Speech
  • Heavy sweating or hot, dry skin
  • Elevated body temperature
  • Rapid heart rate

The summer months are a busy and lucrative time for our construction teams. However, the summer days can quickly turn dangerous if the proper measures are not taken to avoid heat illness. Make sure to follow our Summer Safety Tips and have a great summer!


David Judd

President of Florida Operations

Wehr Constructors, Inc.