Occupational Heat Exposure in City Workers

Authors: Christopher Uejio*, Florida State University, Jihon Jung, Florida State University
Topics: Medical and Health Geography, Climatology and Meteorology
Keywords: public health, medical geography, climate, labor
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/14/2018
Start / End Time: 2:00 PM / 3:40 PM
Room: Napoleon B1, Sheraton 3rd Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

Outdoor workers engaged in agriculture, construction, firefighting, manufacturing, military, or resource extraction also face heightened heat related illness risks. The study compared the heat exposure of workers with limited access to air conditioning versus local weather station readings. The study also surveyed worker's thermal comfort, knowledge, and practices to adapt to extreme heat. Participants wore a personal heat exposure sensor over seven days from June 1st to July 3rd, 2015 in Tallahassee, Florida U.S. Participants completed a social survey and daily thermal comfort log. Some participants (36.8%) experienced hotter and more humid conditions (heat index > 2) than the weather station. During work hours, higher heat exposure increased the odds of a participant feeling too hot. Shifting work duties indoors made workers feel more comfortable (OR: 0.28, 95% CI: 0.11-0.70, p = 0.005). In hot and humid climates, everyday heat exposures continuously challenge the health of outdoor workers. 

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