Cold Stress

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Transcript Cold Stress

Cold Stress
Facilities Management
By: Chaizong Lor, Safety Coordinator
Cold Stress Factors
Cold Environment
Basic Hypothermia Concepts
Conditions Affecting Hypothermia
Hypothermia Signs & Symptoms
Safety Procedures
Preventing Cold Stress
Cold Stress Factors
• Cold stress is the loss heat to the environment due to:
– Low temperature: Cold air temperatures
• The Cold will forces body to work harder to maintain it’s
• The Cold air, water, and snow all draw heat from the body
– Wind: High velocity air movement
• Wind chill is combination of air temperature and wind speed and
capable of bringing cold stress in the 50’s with rain and wind
– Wetness: Contact with cold water or surfaces
• The body’s first response to cold stress is to conserve
body heat by reducing blood circulation through the
Cold Stress Factors
• Normal body temperature is 98.6 degrees F.
• When body temperature drops below 86 degree F,
the temperature control system becomes
• When body temperature drops below 59 degrees F,
it begins to experience impairment of many
Basic Hypothermia Concepts
• Hypothermia means “Low Heat” and is a potentially
serious health condition
• The major injuries associated with cold
temperatures are:
– General hypothermia
– Immersion hypothermia
– Frostbite
• Prolonged exposure to cold causes the body to lose
energy faster than it is produced
Conditions Affecting
• Aging, allergies, poor circulation & illness
• Self-imposed conditions, such as alcohol use,
anti-depressants, or sedatives
– The body may have difficulty regulating temperature.
• Wet clothing, windy conditions, & poor physical
Hypothermia Signs & Symptoms
• Increased Risk
– Predisposing Health Conditions
• Cardiovascular Disease
• Diabetes
• Hypertension
– Poor Physical Condition
Hypothermia Signs & Symptoms
• Mild Hypothermia (98 – 90 degrees F)
– Shivering
– Numbness in limbs, loss of dexterity, and clumsiness
– Slurred speech
– Memory loss
– Pale, cold skin
Hypothermia Signs & Symptoms
• Moderate Hypothermia (90 – 86 degrees F)
– Shivering stops
– Confused and irrational
– Unable to walk or stand
• Severe Hypothermia (86 – 78 degree F)
– Severe muscle stiffness
– Very sleepy or unconscious
– Ice cold skin
– Reduced pulse
– Death is a possibility
Safety Procedures
• Proper treatment depends on the severity of the
– Mild Hypothermia
• Move to warm area
• Stay active
• Remove wet clothes and replace with dry clothes or blankets,
cover the head
• Drink warm (not hot) sugary drink
Safety Procedures Cont.
• Moderate Hypothermia
– Use all of the Mild Hypothermia procedures and plus the
• Call 911 for an ambulance
• Cover all extremities completely
• Warm center of body first with warm objects
• Severe Hypothermia
– Call 911 for an ambulance
– Treat the victim very gently
– Do not attempt to re-warm, the victim should receive
treatment in a hospital
• Frostbite occurs when the skin actually freezes and
loses water.
• Freezing of deep layers of skin
• Pale, waxy-white skin color
• Skin becomes hard and numb
• Usually affects:
– Fingers and hands
– Toes and feet
– Ears and nose
Frostbite Cont.
• Three stages of frostbite
– Frost nip
• Individual experiences a “pins and needles” sensation and
skin is unusually white and soft.
– Superficial
• Characterized by waxy feeling, frozen, numb, and possible
blistering skin.
– Deep
• The most serious type of frostbite affects the blood vessels,
muscles, nerves, tendons, and even bone -leading to possible
permanent damage, blood clots, and death of body tissues.
Emergency Procedures
• What to do:
– Call 9-911
– Move to warm area
– Remove wet clothing
– Drink warm sweet fluids
– Do not rub the affected area
– Wrap in soft cloth
Preventing Cold Stress
• Engineering Controls
– Provide for general or spot heating, including
hand warming.
– Use insulating material on equipment handles.
– Provide wind barriers if possible.
• Administrative & Work Practices
– Train employees about cold stress,
cold-related disorders, and first aid.
– Schedule work at warm times, if possible.
– Move work to warm areas, if possible.
– Take regular breaks in warm places.
Preventing Cold Stress Cont.
• Administrative & Work Practices Cont.
– Use the buddy system (work in pairs when possible)
– Drink warm, sweet fluids, avoid caffeine and alcohol
– Recognize the environmental conditions
that lead to cold stress
• Personal Protection
– Properly selected, insulated, and layered clothing
– Waterproof boots and gloves
– Eye protection for snow or ice-covered terrain
Cold Stress
Revision Dated: September 29th, 2014