Monday, 26 February, 2024
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Change in work hours suggested after heat stroke deaths

The recent heatwave was responsible for the deaths of seven farmworkers in the Northern Cape, where, in the Kakamas area, temperatures rose to 50 degrees, and where the sun sets only at about 8pm in summer.

Employment & Labour Minister Thulas Nxesi said inspectors were conducting inspections in the region and have recommended that farm labourers work from 4am to 11am and resume work at 5pm to 7pm, reports TimesLIVE.

According to the department’s inspectors, every employer was expected to conduct a risk assessment of the workplace, and when any of the identified risks changed, the employer needed to introduce mitigating measures, especially in this instance where there was a risk of temperatures rising to 51ºC.

 

TimesLIVE article – Heat stroke deaths: department suggests working early, late hours (Open access)

 

See more MedicalBrief archives:

 

Extreme heat exacerbating global health risks — UN scientific report

 

The dire consequences of climate change on SA’s health

 

Heat stroke victims should first be cooled on site

 

 

 

 

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