Tag Archives: workplace temperatures

Hot, hot, hot….Willie Rennie calls for maximum workplace temperatures

How are you all coping with the heat?

We are sweltering up here and I am very conscious that we are 10 degrees cooler than most of you in England and Wales. That must be incredibly uncomfortable

We had to stop the dogs going upstairs because it was so warm they were panting all the time. They are basically being kept most of the time in the living room with an air conditioning thing going.

I had a much better night than I expected. All humans and dogs seemed to sleep reasonably. You could tell it was it was hot though. No matter what the temperature, you will normally find me tucked in with the duvet up to my neck. Last night I lay on top of it – until 4 am when I got into bed properly cos my toes were cold.

Sadly I had to go out this morning to my local health centre. It was like an oven. The person who deprived me of my blood had two fans going and was still uncomfortably hot. I felt a bit guilty that I was able to escape to the air-conditioned supermarket while they were stuck in there all day.

So I was pleased to see that Willie Rennie has called for a maximum workplace temperature of 30 degrees and 27 degrees if strenuous work is involved.

At present UK government guidance suggests a minimum of 16ºC or 13ºC if employees are doing physical work but there’s no guidance for a maximum temperature limit. Instead employers just have to commit to “keeping the temperature at a comfortable level”.

However a report from the TUC suggests that short of someone actually being injured or killed it’s unlikely to actually be enforced, despite excessive temperatures being associated with a loss of concentration, increased accidents, falling productivity and risks to health.

Willie’s call would give employers a statutory duty to introduce effective control measures, such as installing ventilation or moving staff away from windows and sources of heat, in line with WHO recommendations for maximum temperatures for working in comfort. Willie has also filed a parliamentary motion which urges Scottish ministers to raise the issue with their UK counterparts.

Willie said:

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 10 Comments
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