Working safely in the sun A guide for outdoor workers
Why talk about skin cancer?Australia is the skin cancer capital of the world with 2/3Australians diagnosed with Skin Cancer before the age of 70.Every year approximately 440,000 cases are diagnoses and1,850 deaths – which is greater than the nations road tollYearly costs to the healthcare system are in excess of $500million2/3 of deaths are menMelanoma in WA (2008) 1082 diagnosed 123 deaths Most common cancer in 15 to 39 year oldsThe Good news is that skin cancer is preventable Image courtesy of Queensland Health
Non-melanoma skin cancerBasal cell carcinoma (BCC) – 67% of cases – Grow slowly (months to years) – Common sites include head, neck and upper body – Strongly associated with shorter, high UV exposures and sunburn BCCSquamous cell carcinoma (SCC) – 31% of cases – Grow rapidly (months) – Sun exposed sites including lips, ears and balding scalp – Common in outdoor workers SCC
MelanomaLess than 2% of skin cancers, but4th most common cancer inAustraliaMost dangerous & aggressiveStarts in a freckle, mole or normalskin and can occur in sites thatare not often exposed to the sunGrow and spread rapidly (weeks Melanomato months)
Other damage from UVSolar keratosis: sun spots – pink, scaly, notskin cancer but a warning of sun damage Sunburn Solar keratosis Wrinkling and premature aging Eye DamageShort term: Long term: SunburnExcessive blinking CataractsSwelling PterygiumDifficulty looking at strong light CancersPhoto keratopathy, snow-blindness Cataract Pterygium
The UV Index 0-2 0 to 2 You can safely enjoy being outside Low 3-5 3 to 7 Seek shade during middayModerate hours. Slip on a shirt, slop on 6-7 sunscreen slide on sunnies and High slap on a hat 8-10Very high 8 or Limit time outside during more midday hours. Make sure you 11+ Slip, Slop, Slap, Seek & SlideExtreme
UV across Australia Summer WinterMonthly mean clear-sky UV Index: 12 Monthly mean clear-sky UV Index: 7 Source: Bureau of Meteorology (www.bom.gov.au)
SunSmart UV AlertReported when the UV index for the day is moderate: 3 or above – based on clearsky day.Can be found in the West Australian and Sunday Times, also on some radio andTV weather reports, BOM website, or iPhone app.
Who is at risk of skin cancer?All Australians, but particularly those who: Have fair skin Have fair or reddish hair Have freckles or many moles Burn easily and cannot easily develop a tan Have a family history of melanoma Spent their childhood in Australia Works or spend a lot of leisure time in the sun Do not protect their skin from the sun Use solariums or sun beds (artificial tanning devices)
How can Centurion protect you?Risk assessmentSun protection control measureso Engineering controls (shade, window tinting)o Administration controlso Sun protective PPETraining employees to worksafely in the sunSun protection policyMonitoring program effectiveness
What can you do?Employees also have a duty to take care to theirown health and safety and cooperate withemployers’ efforts to improve health and safety.Be Sun Smart
Be Sun Smart!1. Slip on protective clothing2. Slop on SPF 30+ sunscreen3. Slap on a hat4. Seek shade5. Slide on some sunglasses
Slip on sun protective clothing Long sleeves (driving sleeves are an option for those in a vehicle) Long shorts or trousers Collar/high neckline Fabrics with close weave, natural fibres and medium colour Loose fitting UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor) 50+
Slop on sunscreenDo not rely on sunscreen alone!Choosing a sunscreen: – SPF 30+ – Broad spectrum – Water resistant – Valid expiry date Image courtesy of Cancer CouncilStore below 30°C e.g. Esky, office, cooler bag
How to apply sunscreenDo not rub in, instead layer it onApply 20 minutes before going out to clean, dry skinReapply every 2 hours or more if sweating, toweldrying or swimmingLook for different varieties for different needs e.g. non greasy, dry touch, sensitive, sport/active
Slap on a hatLook for a hat that is:o Broad brim: 7.5cmo Bucket hat: 6cmo Legionnaire style (back flap)o Detachable neck flaps for hard hats Image courtesy of Cancer CouncilFabric should be 50+ UPF and a closeweaveNo caps! They leave the neck, ears and sideof face exposed.
Seek shadeWhenever possible seek shadewhether it be from existing builtstructures, shade from trees orportable shadeSpend work break times inside or inthe shade.Ask your supervisor if it is possible foradditional shade provision if you thinktheir isn’t enough.
Slide on some sunglassesDon’t forget to wear sunglasses because thesun also damages your eyes! Look for stylesthat:o Meet Australian standards or have an EPF of 9 or 10o Are close fitting, wrap around in style Image courtesy of Cancer Council
Checking your skinLook for: – New spots – Changing spots – Non-healing soresAsk your doctor, partner offriend to check hard to seespots like your back and scalp.Any concerns, see your doctorstraight away Image courtesy of Cancer Council
Melanoma – ABCD Image courtesy of Cancer Council
In summaryBe Sun Smart, protect yourself in five ways: 1. Slip on sun protective clothing 2. Slop on SPF 30+ sunscreen 3. Slap on a brimmed hat 4. Seek shade 5. Slide on some sunglassesTake extra care in the middle of the day when UV radiation ismost intenseCheck your skin regularlyVisit your GP if you notice any spots with changes in size,shape or colour.
Thanks to the Cancer CouncilFor more information Cancer Council Helpline 13 11 20 www.cancerwa.asn.au/sunsmart Sun Smart Workplace Coordinator Lauren Zappa email@example.com
Working safely in the Heat A guide for everyone
Heat StressHeat stress is most likely in summerHeat stress affects: simple discomfort to lifethreateningSome people are simply less tolerant of heat thanothersEmployers need to have a safe system of work thatdoes not penalise these peopleEmployees are required to take reasonable care toensure their own safety and health at work
What is Heat StressDehydrationHeat CrampsHeat ExhaustionHeat Stroke
Heat stress - contributing factors High Temperatures High Humidity Low movement of air Radiant temperature of surroundings Person’s clothing Physical activity Lack of acclimatisation Physically unfit or overweight Age and medically condition Being on certain medications Use of Drugs Heart or circulatory disorders Alcohol Clothing Not acclimatised
Your body’s cooling systemIn very hot conditions the onlyway heat can be lost is byevaporation of sweat.Water lost as sweat must bereplacedEven if you don’t feel thirsty youneed to drink water, juices orother non-alcoholic drinks insufficient amounts andfrequency to avoid to replace thewater and avoid dehydration
Assessing DehydrationA simple check of your urine colour
AcclimatisationThe body is able to adjust it’s heat regulationmechanisms to suit the environment – ie peoplebecome acclimatised.Most acclimatisation occurs in the first four to sevendays and is fully effective in about 2 weeksOver this period, physical activity should start belownormal work load and be gradually increased
PrecautionsReplace fluid loss by drinking more water – 100 to 200mlat frequent intervalsKeep out of sunlight wherever possible (use the shadeof an umbrella, a broad brimmed hat or work in shade)Have rest pauses in a cool placeHelp your sweat evaporate by wearing loose lightweightclothing to allow air to circulate around your bodyAllow time to acclimatise if working in hot conditions forthe first time or resuming after a break awayMaintain a healthy lifestyle
Symptoms of Heat Stress and how to deal with themAgitation or confusion Clumsy FatigueDry mouth and mucous Collapsemembranes Fitting DizzinessIncreased heart rate Dry skin ThirstLess frequent urination Headache SickMental changes VeryPale, cool and clammy skin sweaty Rest in the coolest available place and drink cool but not cold fluids.Seek medical advice if there is no rapid improvement
Heat Stroke – can be life threatening Person will have stopped sweating Body temperature will be high Skin hot and dry Confusion and loss of consciousness may occur The person should be treated by a doctor as a matter of urgency. Until medical aid is available cool the person as quickly as possible. soak clothing in water or splash water on skin increase air movement by fanning give fluids if possible
Thanks to the Department of Commerce Work Safe WAFor more information http://www.docep.wa.gov.au/worksafe