It’s mid-summer, which means it’s HOT! Many areas have been experiencing extreme temperatures, and sadly that leads to high risks for heat causing illness.
In the aviation industry, a lot of us work outdoors or in sweltering (hot box) hangars. You and your fellow coworkers need to be aware of the risk factors that may affect your heat tolerance, and take the combative steps to stay healthy.
Stay Hydrated! Sweat glands are activated when the brain determines a part of the body needs to be cooled. Sweat evaporates allowing for loss of heat, but also loss of water & electrolytes. A good recommendation for a moderately active person in a moderate temp, is to drink 1 cup of water every 15-20 minutes. REMEMBER to drink before you feel thirsty! Although sports drinks are readily available, eating a balanced diet and occasional salt-containing snack should be adequate in replacing sweat lost electrolytes. If you don’t like the taste of plain water, add some frozen fruit such as strawberries, grapes, lemon or orange slices to give it a healthy, tasty twist that keeps your water cool!
Keep Cool! Increased heat production from physical exertion (installing avionics!) and environmental temperatures make it important to develop a go-to method to cool down and lower your core body temperature. You should take regular breaks in a shaded or air-conditioned area, and if in an enclosed space, always keep the air moving with a high powered fan. Management should take a preplanned approach to jobs with higher risks of heat exposure, and schedule them during cooler periods of the day. If possible in your position, wear clothing appropriate for the temperature, such as heat reflective & sweat wicking materials, draped water-dampened cotton around your neck or head for quick cooling effects, and even try cooling vests with cold pack pockets.
As a company in Florida, SEA knows that Summer Heat is a Serious Thing & we want to see all of our readers stay safe & healthy!