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Sun Safety in the Workplace

Sun Safety & Prevention

Do you work outdoors? Is your workplace Sun Safe?
Find out more about Sun Safety in the Workplace...

Over 80% of all skin cancers are preventable by following
just 5 simple sun safe measures: Slip, Slop, Slap, Slide, Shade...

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A child’s delicate skin can burn within minutes causing
irreparable damage - learn how to protect them...

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Do you know your facts about Sunscreen? Which to buy, what
SPF, UVA protection, how much to apply, when to reapply...

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Did you know that the snow reflects up to 80% of sun
burning UV radiation! Learn about winter sun protection...

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Is your child’s school or pre-school Sun Safe?
Make sure children are protected during school hours...

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Outdoor workers and sun safety

up to 90% of all skin cancers are caused by either prolonged or intense exposure to the sun. Outdoor workers naturally spend more time exposed to UV radiation and are therefore at greater risk of sun damage and the subsequent development of skin cancers. Unfortunately, the subject of sun safety is often neglected in the workplace as a serious health and safety issue, so outdoor workers should be extra careful in ensuring they protect themselves.

SUN SAFETY TIPS FOR OUTDOOR WORKERS

Slip on sun protective clothing

  • Clothing can be one of the most effective barriers between our skin and the sun
    Clothing should cover as much skin as possible
  • Always keep shoulders covered that can easily burn
  • A closer weave will provide more protection
  • A high UPF rated fabric provides best protection

Slop on SPF 30+ sunscreen

  • Always use a sunscreen with a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) 30 or above, preferably water resistant
  • Make sure it's broad spectrum and carries a UVA symbol (if it has a star rating, a minimum 4 star)
  • Take to work and store in an accessible, cool place and remember to check the expiry date
  • Apply a generous amount to clean, dry, exposed skin
  • Apply 20 minutes before going outdoors and preferably once again when outdoors
  • Regardless of the instructions all sunscreens should be reapplied at least every 2 hours and more if perspiring heavily / towelling
  • Remember to protect your lips with an SPF 30+ lip balm

Slap on a sun hat

  • Always wear a hat with a wide brim that shades the face, neck and ears
  • A close weave or UPF rated fabric will provide better protection
  • Legionnaire (with a flap that covers the neck and joins the front peak) or bucket style hats (with minimum 7.5cm brim) are the most effective - Hard hats can be fitted with a sun peak and flap if required

Slide on quality sunglasses

  • Solar UV radiation can be damaging to the eyes so it is important to wear quality sunglasses
  • Overall protection depends on the quality of the lens and the overall design
    Look for the European CE mark which indicates a safe level of protection
  • Those labelled with a high EPF (which rages from 1-10) will provide best protection
  • Ensure they are close fitting and wrap around to stop solar UVR entering the sides and top
    Remember price and darkness of the lens have no reflection on the quality of protection

Shade from the sun whenever possible

  • Shade can provide a good barrier between our skin and the sun
  • Seek shade whenever possible, particularly at the hottest times of the day between 11am and 3pm when UV penetration is strongest and at break times
  • Outside jobs can sometimes be done inside or moved to a shady location.
  • A temporary shelter can be erected or trees and buildings used for protection.
  • Try to reorganise the job so tasks requiring outdoor work get done in the morning before 11 am and after 3 pm, to avoid the hours of greatest sun intensity.
  • Never rely on shade alone, always combine with personal protection measures

Remember that ultraviolet radiation from the sun bounces off water, sand, concrete, light-coloured surfaces and snow and can considerably increase the strength of the sun's
damaging rays. People who work near these areas will need to take extra care.

Some outdoor workers are also exposed to substances that increase the harmful effects of ultraviolet radiation. These include industrial chemicals such as asphalt and diphenyls, and some medications. People who work near or with these substances need to take extra care. A water resistant sunscreen can help give protection when there is likely to be skin contact with these substances.

Is your workplace sun safe?

All employers have a duty of care to assess health risks at work. We know that over 80% of cases, skin cancer is caused by over exposure to UV, it is thus largely preventable! Education on the prevention and early detection of the disease is therefore paramount and really needs to be on everyone's agenda. This is why Skcin have developed 'Sun Safe Workplaces' - an accreditation scheme specifically designed to guide employers through the process of implementing a suitable and successful Sun Safe Policy into their organisation. The Sun Safe Workplaces website and associated content produced specifically for the scheme provide both employers and employees with the most comprehensive range of resources ever made available to UK organisations with the key objective of preventing skin cancer through education.

If you are an outdoor worker and would like to see the Sun Safe Workplaces accreditation scheme implemented by your employers, please make them aware of the scheme and direct them to:
www.sunsafeworkplaces.co.uk where they can find out everything they need to know.

CLICK HERE FOR FURTHER INFORMATION AND TO VISIT SUN SAFE WORKPLACES

Sun Safety & Skin Cancer Booklet
Sun Safety & Skin Cancer Booklet
Download all you need to
know in one handy little book
DOWNLOAD NOW
Sunbeds Can Cause Melanoma!
Sunbeds Can Cause Melanoma!
Sunbeds are not safe - fact! Find
out the truth and misconceptions
LEARN MORE
Skin Cancer - The Warning Signs
Skin Cancer - The Warning Signs
Learn how to check your skin and
what you should be looking for...
LEARN MORE
Am I at risk of Skin Cancer
Am I at risk of Skin Cancer
Learn about your skin type level
of associated risk and protection...
LEARN MORE
Spotlight Topics
Debbie’s Story
BASAL CELL CARCINOMA
Real Life Stories
Debbie’s Story
BASAL CELL CARCINOMA
LEARN MORE
Kerri’s Story
MELANOMA
Real Life Stories
Kerri’s Story
MELANOMA
LEARN MORE
Sun Safe Workplaces:
Endorsed By:

Sun Safe Schools
Sun Safe Schools
National primary school accreditation scheme developed by Skcin to teach children and assist schools and parents on the importance of sun safety
LEARN MORE
Sun Safe Nurseries
Sun Safe Nurseries
National pre-school accreditation scheme developed by Skcin to teach children and assist settings and parents on the importance of sun safety
LEARN MORE
Sun Safe Workplaces
Sun Safe Workplaces
National workplace accreditation scheme developed by Skcin to teach outdoor workers and employers the importance of sun safety
LEARN MORE
Virgin Holidays
Virgin Holidays
Skcin have partnered with Virgin Holidays to target the most difficult ‘at risk’ group of holiday makers and active tan seekers for all year round awareness
LEARN MORE

Articles of interest

Skcin launches MASCEDthe UK’s first online melanoma and skin cancer education programme with hair, health and health i...


Queens Park School completes Step 4 towards becoming a Sun Safe School - Lesson Plan

Skcin are pleased to announce that Queens Park School in London have completed Step 4 towards becoming a Sun Safe School...


Queens Park School completes Step 4 towards becoming a Sun Safe School - Lesson Plan

Skcin are pleased to announce that Queens Park School in London have completed Step 4 towards becoming a Sun Safe School...


Queens Park School completes Step 2 towards becoming a Sun Safe School - Communication With Parents

Skcin are pleased to announce that Queens Park School in London have completed Step 2 towards becoming a Sun Safe School...


Queens Park School completes Step 1 towards becoming a Sun Safe School - Sun Safety Policy

Skcin are pleased to announce that Queens Park School in London have completed Step 1 towards becoming a Sun Safe School...