For agricultural workers who work outdoors, heat illness can be a serious problem. Heat illness—including heat exhaustion and heat stroke—refers to a variety of symptoms including: headaches, dizziness, cramps, fainting, rapid heartbeat, and disorientation.
The State of California requires that all employers train their employees about heat illness prevention and provide plenty of water and access to shade. Employers must be in compliance with the Cal/OSHA Heat Illness Prevention Standard.
WCAHS conducts the CHIPS Study and other research and outreach with employers, farmworkers, and community partners on the signs, symptoms, and prevention of heat illness. The center also assists employers in developing a heat prevention plan and integrating adult education methods when training their employees about heat illness prevention.
Trainings cover topics including:
- Heat illness prevention
- Elements of an effective heat prevention plan
- Practical solutions to provide water and shade
- The importance of drinking water
- The difference between water and energy drinks, coffee and drinks with alcohol
- Signs and symptoms of heat illness