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Monday, August 10, 1998 Published at 09:42 GMT 10:42 UK


Health

Sweltering office alert

Hot weather is great on the beach, but it can cause problems in the office

It may have been a long time coming, but summer has arrived and with it comes a warning of the dangers of working in sweltering heat.

The GMB union says offices in the UK are often unprepared for hot summers and many can reach temperatures of up to 95 degrees.

It urges employers to do all they can to keep temperatures down as it says excessive heat can lead to accidents, injury, dehydration, increased stress and concentration problems.

Temperatures can soar in cramped windowless offices with equipment that gives off heat, such as photocopiers.

And staff who work outside can get heat stroke and may be at risk of developing skin cancer if they do not cover up properly.

Reasonable

Monday is expected to be the hottest day of the year so far in many areas of the UK, with temperatures in London expected to reach 34 degrees.

The law does not set any maximum temperatures for offices. It just says working temperatures should be 'reasonable'.

Paul Barnsley of the GMB said: "The law unfortunately does not prescribe how this should be achieved."



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Health Contents

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