As summer approaches, the GMB union has issued a warning to those who work outdoors and their employers to take measures to reduce work-related risks from exposure to sunlight. 90 per cent of the deaths each year are preventable and early diagnosis can prevent skin cancer being fatal.
The risk of those who work outside suffering as a result of exposure to the sun is a foreseeable risk. Employers should carry out a risk assessment, involving their workforce, to identify preventative and protective measures to be introduced to counter all sun-related risks. Such measures may include:
- organising work so that outdoor tasks are not performed between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. when the sun is at its strongest;
- rotating jobs;
- the provision of shade;
- the provision of adequate headwear and loose clothing;
- the provision of sun screen of at least factor 15 plus; and
- the supply of fluids to prevent dehydration.