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Microsoft word - sftybull #34 cold temps.doc

INDUSTRY WIDE LABOR-MANAGEMENT SAFETY COMMITTEE SAFETY BULLETIN #34
GUIDELINES FOR WORKING IN EXTREME COLD TEMPERATURE CONDITIONS


INTRODUCTION

When working in cold conditions, the two most common hazards are hypothermia and
frostbite. With proper awareness and pre-planning, these hazards can be eliminated.
HYPOTHERMIA

Hypothermia is a potentially deadly condition, which results in an abnormally low body
temperature. This drop in temperature occurs when the body loses heat faster than it is
produced. Anyone exposed to near freezing temperatures for prolonged periods of time
should be familiar in the prevention and treatment of hypothermia. A combination of
cold, wet and windy conditions will result in hypothermia for anyone who is inadequately
prepared and protected.
Certain conditions will increase your risk:

$ Poor diet or alcohol, tobacco or drug use An individual’s physiology may affect the body’s ability to acclimate; possibly, increasing
the risk.
Early symptoms of hypothermia are often overlooked, they include:
To most people, these may just seem like normal consequences of exposure to winter conditions. Ignoring these early signs can be very dangerous. If you or a co-worker experience early symptoms of hypothermia, take action. Revised: March 21, 2001
Page 1 of 5
SAFETY BULLETINS ARE RECOMMENDED GUIDELINES ONLY; CONSULT ALL APPLICABLE RULES AND REGULATIONS SAFETY BULLETINS MAY BE VIEWED OR DOWNLOADED FROM THE WEBSITE WWW.CSATF.ORG
G:\wpdata\AMPTP\Bulletins\Current\SftyBull #34 COLD TEMPS.doc Also watch for additional behavioral signs including:

At the first sign of any of these conditions, notify your supervisor and/or seek medical
attention (i.e., set medic, studio hospital or medical provider) then go inside and get
warm, before you attempt to complete the job or project you are working on.

HYPOTHERMIA PREVENTION

Preventing hypothermia is not difficult. In fact, it is much easier to avoid hypothermia
than to treat it after the fact. You can prevent hypothermia if you pre-plan, know what
the conditions are expected to be and plan your clothing accordingly.
Some clothing tips to remember:
$ Clothing does not warm you; it provides insulation to preserve your warmth. $ As much as half of your body heat is lost through your head and neck, so keep $ Keep rain and wind out of your clothing $ Avoid overheating and sweating by ventilating as needed $ Wool clothing is best followed by synthetics, down is okay if kept dry, but cotton
Food and behavior:
$ Watch what you eat. Minor changes to your normal behavior are an important $ This is not the time for a starvation diet. It is important to maintain your optimal $ Take extra steps to stay warm and dry by preventing exposure to wind and water Revised: March 21, 2001
Page 2 of 5
SAFETY BULLETINS ARE RECOMMENDED GUIDELINES ONLY; CONSULT ALL APPLICABLE RULES AND REGULATIONS SAFETY BULLETINS MAY BE VIEWED OR DOWNLOADED FROM THE WEBSITE WWW.CSATF.ORG
G:\wpdata\AMPTP\Bulletins\Current\SftyBull #34 COLD TEMPS.doc If you are working in cold weather, remember these tips:
$ Do not diet; give your body the appropriate nutrients $ This will increase your metabolism and help keep you warm
$ Continue to drink fluids, water is best, no alcohol

Consider the following:
$ If you do not need to be outside, go inside, even if it is only for a few minutes $ If you cannot go inside, exercise, jog in place, shake your arms, these activities will increase your circulation and increase heat
If someone is showing signs of hypothermia:
$ Hypothermia symptoms should receive medical treatment as soon as possible $ Prevent further heat loss by sheltering from exposure to wind and water $ Bring the crew member inside to a warm area, if possible $ Seek medical attention (i.e., set medic, studio hospital or medical provider) $ Remove any wet clothing and replace with dry clothing $ Wrap the crew member in blankets and cover their head $ No caffeine, alcohol or tobacco should be used
FROSTBITE
Frostbite is more common than hypothermia. It is the result of the freezing of the
extracellular fluid in the skin, which can permanently damage the tissue. This condition
usually affects the extremities, such as the tips of fingers, the ears and nose but other
exposed areas can also be affected. Like hypothermia, a combination of elements
usually leads to frostbite not cold air alone. In fact, most frostbite is the result of
conduction, the rapid transfer of heat, for example, touching cold metal surfaces with
bare hands. Exposure to cold temperatures and wind can quickly result in frostbite.
Factors that can increase your risk of frostbite are:

Revised: March 21, 2001
Page 3 of 5
SAFETY BULLETINS ARE RECOMMENDED GUIDELINES ONLY; CONSULT ALL APPLICABLE RULES AND REGULATIONS SAFETY BULLETINS MAY BE VIEWED OR DOWNLOADED FROM THE WEBSITE WWW.CSATF.ORG
G:\wpdata\AMPTP\Bulletins\Current\SftyBull #34 COLD TEMPS.doc
Signs and Symptoms of Frostbite

Mild frostbite affects the outer skin layers and appears as a blanching or whitening of
the skin. This usually disappears as warming occurs, but the skin may appear red for
several hours
In severe cases the skin will appear waxy-looking with a white, gray-yellow or gray-blue
color. The affected parts will have no feeling and blisters may be present. The tissue
will feel frozen or “wooden"
Other indicators are; swelling, itching, burning and deep pain as the area is warmed
Frostbite Prevention
Just as with hypothermia, frostbite is much easier to prevent than it is to treat. All of the
items listed above for hypothermia would also apply for frostbite.
Summary

$ Wear proper clothing which insulates from the cold and provides protection from $ Protect your hands and feet (mittens are warmer than gloves but may limit $ Keep clothing and shoes loose, to ensure good circulation $ Do not diet; give your body the appropriate nutrients $ Alcohol, tobacco or drugs should not be used $ Never touch a cold metal object with your bare hands Revised: March 21, 2001
Page 4 of 5
SAFETY BULLETINS ARE RECOMMENDED GUIDELINES ONLY; CONSULT ALL APPLICABLE RULES AND REGULATIONS SAFETY BULLETINS MAY BE VIEWED OR DOWNLOADED FROM THE WEBSITE WWW.CSATF.ORG
G:\wpdata\AMPTP\Bulletins\Current\SftyBull #34 COLD TEMPS.doc Frostbite Treatment

If you think you may have frostbite, even a mild case, immediately seek medical
attention.
The following list will provide some guidelines for treating frostbite:
$ Get to a place where you can stay warm after thawing; do not allow the affected $ Seek medical attention (i.e., set medic, studio hospital or medical provider), re- warming should be conducted under medical supervision $ Warm water is best for re-warming; do not rub or massage the area, or use dry $ If blisters are present, leave them intact $ No alcohol, tobacco or drugs should not be used
GENERAL PRECAUTIONS

The following are some additional steps the production can take to minimize the risks:
$ Monitor local weather forecast information daily and conduct cold stress $ Provide adequate heated shelters for cast and crew $ Maintain a suitable thermometer and anemometer (wind measuring device) at the site; these will be used to determine the equivalent chill temperature $ Charts for establishing acceptable working conditions based on temperature and $ Establish safe areas and paths, no wandering or sightseeing, this will reduce the Revised: March 21, 2001
Page 5 of 5
SAFETY BULLETINS ARE RECOMMENDED GUIDELINES ONLY; CONSULT ALL APPLICABLE RULES AND REGULATIONS SAFETY BULLETINS MAY BE VIEWED OR DOWNLOADED FROM THE WEBSITE WWW.CSATF.ORG
G:\wpdata\AMPTP\Bulletins\Current\SftyBull #34 COLD TEMPS.doc

Source: http://www.csattf.biz/pdf/34COLD_TEMPS.pdf

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