Avoid heat exhaustion risk, says Abu Dhabi's Civil Defence

Abu Dhabi has advised construction workers and those working outdoors to take regular breaks in the summer to minimise the risk of heat exhaustion

Workers told to minimise the effects of heat exhaustion.
Workers told to minimise the effects of heat exhaustion.

Construction workers have been advised to take regular breaks during peak hours to minimise sun exposure, and the risk of heat exhaustion.

The General Command of the Civil Defence has launched a heat exhaustion prevention campaign in corporation with its regional administration to raise awareness around the dangers of excessive heat exposure as summer approaches.

The initiative is part of a broader policy to promote general occupational and community safety.

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As part of the campaign the General Command of the Civil Defence has reminded people that work outdoors, such as construction site workers, to take regular breaks during peak hours to prevent heat exhaustion.

The Civil Defence has introduced a raft of preventative safety measures in all of its locations to avoid accidents that could be caused by negligence or a lack of awareness. However, it did not spell out what these initiatives were.

The commander-general of the Civil Defence, Major General Jassem Mohammed Al Marzouki, said employers needed to implement “general safety standards to provide a healthy and safe working environment” according to the state-owned Emirates New Agency (WAM).

It is unclear if heat exhaustion is a problem on construction sites in the UAE, but the number of fatalities and accidents on building projects has reportedly declined.

Director of health, safety, and environment (HSE) at the Dubai Creative Clusters Authority (DCCA), Ahmad Al Sumaiti, told Construction Week that major accidents and fatalities had “drastically decreased”.

Meanwhile, Expo 2020 Dubai held a health and safety event to promote good practices at the construction project, with its on-site team already at 15,000-strong.

Leaders from Expo 2020 Dubai’s construction and health and safety teams, as well as from Dubai Municipality and the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MOHRE), attended the April event.

Expo 2020 Dubai’s senior vice president for real estate and delivery, Ahmed Al Khatib, said all construction stakeholders needed to “demonstrate leadership” to ensure the “high standards Expo 2020 has set are enforced across the project”.

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