Heat Illness Prevention

Almond Alliance is reminding all employers to protect outdoor workers from heat illness as excessive heat watches have been issued throughout California.  Employers in California must take steps to protect outdoor workers from heat illness by providing water, rest, shade and training.

Cal/OSHA’s heat illness prevention standard applies to all outdoor worksites. To prevent heat illness, the law requires employers to provide outdoor workers fresh water, access to shade at 80 degrees and whenever requested by a worker, cool-down rest breaks in addition to regular breaks and maintain a written prevention plan with training on the signs of heat illness and what to do in case of an emergency.

In certain industries, when the temperature at outdoor worksites reaches or exceeds 95 degrees, Cal/OSHA’s standard requires additional protections. The industries with high-heat requirements are agriculture, construction, landscaping, oil and gas extraction and transportation of agricultural products, construction materials or other heavy indusial and commercial products. High-heat procedures include ensuring employees are observed regularly for signs of heat illness and establishing effective communication methods so workers can contact a supervisor when needed.

Employers with outdoor workers in all industries must take the following steps to prevent heat illness:

  • Plan – Develop and implement an effective written heat illness prevention plan that includes emergency response procedures.
  • Training – Train all employees and supervisors on heat illness prevention.
  • Water – Provide drinking water that is fresh, pure, suitably cool and free of charge so that each worker can drink at least 1 quart per hour, and encourage workers to do so.
  • Rest – Encourage workers to take a cool-down rest in the shade for at least five minutes when they feel the need to do so to protect themselves from overheating. Workers should not wait until they feel sick to cool down.
  • Shade – Provide proper shade when temperatures exceed 80 degrees. Workers have the right to request and be provided shade to cool off at any time.

Below are links to heat illness prevention online resources, materials and printable flyers to use in your workplace this season:

For Employers:

For Workers:

  • Pocket Guide: Protect Yourself from Heat Illness (English/Spanish), Click Here.
  • Heat Safety Fact Sheet (English), Click Here. 
  • File a Health & Safety Complaint (English), Click Here.
  • Additional Heat Illness Prevention Resources, Click Here

Training and Education:  

  • Materials available for order by email at heat@dir.ca.gov to order copies of the below materials at no cost. (99 Calor campaign page) Material is also available for download, including Heat Illness Prevention videos and discussion guides in multiple languages.
  • Pocket Guide (English/Spanish), Click Here.
  • Illustrated Fact Sheets   English | Spanish
  • Illustrated Poster   English | Spanish
  • Community Training Guide   English | Spanish
  • Supervisor’s Daily Checklist for the Worksite   English | Spanish

Additional Heat Illness Links: 

  • FedOSHA Quick Card: Protecting Workers from Heat Stress, Click Here.
  • National Weather Service: California Information, Click Here.
  • Centers for Disease Control: Heat Stress, Click Here.
  • Centers for Disease Control: Tips for Preventing Heat Related Illness, Click Here.