Royal Mail Group – Sun Safety and Severe Weather Risk Assessment Process:
Further to LTBs 213/22 and 305/22, temperatures have now risen to the highest of the year and are forecast to remain high and increase further as the current heatwave continues. These record temperatures, intense sunlight and exposure to high UV ray levels bring dangers!
The Met Office has yesterday extended an ‘Amber Extreme heat warning’, as temperatures look to build later this week and early next week for much of the UK. The Amber Warning, which has been issued for Sunday (17 July) and Monday (18 July), highlights likely adverse health effects for the public, not just limited to those most vulnerable to extreme heat. Temperatures could be in excess of 35°C in the southeast, and more widely around 32°C within the warning area. These high temperatures could extend further into next week and an extension of this rare, extreme warning covers most of England and Wales and will be considered in the coming days. High Temperature records for the UK could be broken.
All CWU Reps and members need to be alert and aware of those health risks!
Sunburn and Sunstroke – is painful and hurts you in more ways than one. The danger goes far beyond any short-term pain, redness and discomfort, because after the sunburn fades, lasting damage remains. Heatstroke an quickly damage the brain, heart, kidneys and muscles. Sunburn accelerates skin aging and is a leading cause in the majority of Skin Cancer cases. A Sun Tan is not a sign of good health – it’s a sign of serious skin damage!
Skin cancer – is the most common form of cancer in the UK, and rates continue to rise with 100,000 new cases diagnosed each year and 2,500 deaths. The main cause of skin cancer is exposure to the sun’s harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays.
Dehydration – can cause organ damage and failure, seizures, fainting, heatstroke and shock.
IMPORTANT ADVICE TO ALL MEMBERS WORKING OUTSIDE:
- Cover Up – minimise skin exposure – avoid sunburn.
- Protect Your Head – wear a hat with a broad rim.
- Take regular breaks in the shade.
- Use sunscreen/sunblock.
- Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated.
Royal Mail Group – ‘Protect Yourself In The Sun’ Materials
See attached RMG ‘Protect Yourself in The Sun’ – ‘Plasma Screen Shot’ currently being displayed, the joint Royal Mail Group/CWU/IOSH poster and staff pocket card/leaflet which are to be briefed to staff, displayed and distributed by PiCs and Managers to all staff.
‘Mandatory’ Severe Weather Risk Assessment Process
Royal Mail Group have issued RMG SHE Huddle message “Sun Safety FY22 022” and used ‘Workplace- Social Media’ to send out sun safety messages,. RMG have also issued articles on the RMG intranet home page on Sun Safety reminding managers of their responsibilities. Yesterday RMG issued the attached (July Sun Safety Message) on the “My Royal Mail” website. A series of plasma screen slides have been displayed on all the screens in all Units around RMG and the subject has been posted on the weekly “RMG SHE News.” The topic has also been covered in Q&A video clips released by CEO Simon Thompson and more recently by Zareena Brown Chief People Officer.
See attached RMG SHE Huddle/Staff Briefing FY22 022 (Sun Safety) and Royal Mail Managers Briefing July 2022 (Supporting colleagues to stay safe in the sun).
Importantly – both documents instruct that; Managers must complete a Severe Weather Risk Assessment when temperatures reach the high 20s to record the controls that have been implemented. This includes additional advice and support for managing the operation in the hot weather.
PiCs/Managers must complete a Severe Weather Risk Assessment daily in hot, sunny weather and must record the controls that have been implemented to protect the workforce. All PiCs/managers were instructed to familiarise themselves with the Severe Weather Risk Assessment in order to ensure that they are prepared for the current high summer temperatures which the country is currently experiencing.
A supporting pack of sun safety information, including the attached z-cards and posters to display and distribute in units, has been made available to PiCs on the RMG ‘Sharepoint’ site for downloading and printing, under severe weather so they should have been arranging for the information to be shared and displayed. Any enquiries should be directed to the local RMG Safety Health and Environment (SHE) Advisor.
Under The Severe Weather Risk Assessment (SWRA) Managers Must:
- Carry out a SWRA daily and consult/involve the ASR.
- Suspend deliveries and collections if appropriate to do so.
- Communicate the SWRA results to all staff.
- Must not manipulate the SWRA to justify sending out deliveries or collections where it is clearly unsafe to do so.
- Managers must take whatever action is necessary to safeguard employees by removing risks and reducing risks to a tolerable level.
See attached SWRA Extracts for actions in the case of a ‘Yellow Warning’, ‘Amber Warning’ and ‘Red Warning’
- RM/PFWW/CWU/Unite/IOSH ‘Protect Yourself and Stay Safe In The Sun’ Poster
- RMG ‘Protect Yourself and Stay Safe in The Sun’ Plasma Screen Shot
- RMG/CWU/IOSH ‘Stay Safe in The Sun’ Pocket Card/Leaflet
National Health, Safety & Environment Officer
LTB 306-22 – Royal Mail Group Sun Safety and Severe Weather Risk Assessment Process
Royal Mail Managers Sun Safety Briefing July 2022
SHE Huddle FY22 022 Sun Safety
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