The Almond Alliance works closely with the Division of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH), better known as Cal/OSHA to ensure the health and safety of California’s almond industry.
Almond Alliance reminds 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:
- Heat Illness Prevention Training Materials,Click Here.
- Available in PowerPoint,Click Here.
- Heat Illness Prevention Enforcement Q&A,Click Here.
- Cal/OSHA Consultation Services Heat Illness Prevention etool,Click Here.
- Employer Sample Procedures for Heat Illness Prevention,Click Here.
- Available in Word,Click Here.
- Health effects of Heat posters: Agriculture,Click Here.
- Cal/OSHA Guidance on the New Requirements,Click Here.
- 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 firstname.lastname@example.org 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:
Every California employer must establish, implement and maintain a written Injury and Illness Prevention (IIP) Program and a copy must be maintained at each workplace or at a central worksite if the employer has non-fixed worksites. The requirements for establishing, implementing and maintaining an effective written Injury and Illness Prevention Program are contained in Title 8 of the California Code of Regulations, Section 3203 (T8 CCR 3203) and consist of the following elements:
- Hazard Assessment
- Accident/Exposure Investigation
- Hazard Correction
- Training and Instruction
- Employee access to the IIP Program
Guide to Developing your Workplace Injury & Illness Prevention Program, Click Here.
Wildfire smoke and cleanup presents hazards that employers and workers in affected regions must understand. Smoke from wildfires contains chemicals, gases and fine particles that can harm health. Hazards continue even after fires have been extinguished and cleanup work begins. Proper protective equipment and training is required for worker safety in wildfire regions.
Power outages can also present electrical and other hazards for workers. Proper installation and use of generators can prevent electrocution hazards. Workers must also be aware of the potential of electrocution or being injured by moving parts of machinery and other equipment when power is restored. Workers can also face health hazards from power outages in unventilated areas when ventilation systems are not working.
Cal/OSHA has a regulation (section 5141.1) to protect employees exposed to wildfire smoke. The regulation requires the following:
- Identification of harmful exposures
- Training and instruction
- Control of harmful exposures
- Specific particulate sampling requirements if an employer opts to monitor employee exposure with a direct reading instrument
For Information and Resources to Protect Workers Exposed to Smoke, Click Here.
Use the CalOSHA Enforcement district office locator to find the district office in Region 1, 2, 3, or 4 that serves your job location, Click Here.
See a map of the Cal/OSHA Enforcement regional and district offices, Click Here.