Risk Management: Thermal Comfort Term Paper

Excerpt from Term Paper :



Often an entire structural reassessment may be need to reach optimal temperature control for the workplace, To improve temperature control, insulation may be required to keep hot and cold air in and keep the outside temperature and humidity from affecting the workers inside. Air-conditioning is the solution of most workplaces to long, hot summers, but having windows that open can cut down on air-conditioning costs and enable workers to still work even when the temperature control system has been shut down. Having blinds to shield the light from hot windows, minimizing exposure to direct sunlight in general and providing ample water and cooling beverages can also help. If no internal cooling systems are available, allowing employees to take breaks or even to work different shifts (such as avoiding the hotter times of the day) can be valuable (Thermal comfort for office work, 2014, CCOHS). This may be necessary in outdoor working conditions when there is no temperature control -- such as limiting outdoor work time during the very hottest hours of the day from 11pm-3pm. (In some areas of the world, of course, particularly in the southern hemisphere, it is customary to take a nap or siesta during this time). Allowing desk fans and having celling fans can reduce energy costs of cooling on a permanent basis, in addition to artificial cooling.

Employers can help ensure thermal comfort when employees working in the cold not only through internal heating and isolation but by using large windows to bring more light and generate natural warmth. Insulating carpeting and permitting space heaters can also enhance warmth. In the case of situations in which there is no heating (such as during a prolonged power outage after a late...
...The threat of heatstroke or other illnesses due to temperature extremes is very real. Workplaces must strive to find an ambient temperature suitable for the work and the types of employees at the workplace or find an effective scheduling tool for outside workers to ensure minimum exposure to dangerous conditions. There must also be 'Plan Bs' on hand when the traditional artificial methods of heating and cooling are not available or there is an unexpected period of heat or cold for outside workers. Through risk assessment and periodic reassessment and remaining in continual contact with employees about the state of the workplace, employers can ensure that they can maintain the best temperature to ensure productivity will be optimized. Employees as well as employers should know the risks of heat and cold and why certain steps (such as protective clothing) have been instituted for their safety: they should also be mindful of when heating and cooling systems are not operational and are affecting the daily workflow, so alternative measures can be taken.

References

Employers guide. (2014). HSE. Available:

http://www.hse.gov.uk/temperature/thermal/managers.htm [3 May 2014]

Martinez, I. (2014). Human thermal comfort. Available:

http://webserver.dmt.upm.es/~isidoro/Env/Human%20thermal%20comfort.pdf [3 May 2014]

Risk management -- Principles and guidelines. 2009. Joint Australian/New Zealand Standard

Thermal comfort for office work 2014. Canadian Centre on Occupational Health and Safety.

Available: http://www.ccohs.ca/oshanswers/phys_agents/thermal_comfort.html [3 May 2014]

Sources Used in Documents:

References

Employers guide. (2014). HSE. Available:

http://www.hse.gov.uk/temperature/thermal/managers.htm [3 May 2014]

Martinez, I. (2014). Human thermal comfort. Available:

http://webserver.dmt.upm.es/~isidoro/Env/Human%20thermal%20comfort.pdf [3 May 2014]

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