Thursday, 30 March 2017

Effects of Temperature

Workers can be exposed to a varying degree of conditions and resultant temperatures. The effects of excessive cold or heat can have harmful effects on worker's health and accidents can result due to fatigue or thermal stress. People working outside their thermal comfort range can suffer a dramatic loss of efficiency, for example, hot metal process working, working in refrigerated warehouses, working outdoors. The precise effects will depend upon the type of work being carried out, the rate of air movement (wind chill) and temperature and humidity.

The main effects of working at high and low temperatures are outlined as follows:


  • Loss of concentration in mental work.
  • Reduced manipulative powers in manual work.
  • Discomfort caused by shivering.


  • Loss of concentration.
  • Reduced activity rate.
  • Discomfort caused by sweating.

Heat stress:
  • Heat syncope.
  • Heat rash or 'prickly heat'.
  • Heat exhaustion.
  • Anhidrotic heat exhaustion.
  • Heat cramps.
  • Heat stroke.
  • Fainting due to vasodilatation (widening of the blood vessels, especially the arteries, leading to increased blood flow or reduced blood pressure).
  • Skin disorder.
  • Fatigue, nausea, headache, giddiness.
  • Insufficient moisture to sweat.
  • Painful spasms of muscles -­insufficient salt.
  • Breakdown of control mechanisms, body temperatures soar, immediate cooling of body temperature required, otherwise death ensues.
  • Hypothermia.
  • Frost nip/bite.
  • Chilblains.
  • Trench foot, (also known as immersion foot) occurs when the feet are wet for long periods of time.
  • Violent shivering.

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