Deakin recognises that unprotected exposure to the sun is known to increase the risk of sunburn, eye damage, ageing of the skin and skin cancer. Outdoor work in extreme temperatures can lead to a range of other medical conditions including heat stress and hypothermia.
It is University policy that:
- Senior Managers must ensure that there is a safe system of work for their outdoor workers
- Managers must consider the risks associated with outdoor work by carrying a risk assessment and as needed implement appropriate control measures.
- Where the University provides protective equipment or measures the manager must ensure that equipment or measure is suitable, maintained, used appropriately and periodically reviewed.
- Workers under the control of the University must appropriately utilise protective measures and equipment provided by the University. Where protective equipment is provided by the worker, the worker is required to use that protective equipment in the course of their work as needed. Where the above is not done, the manager can suspend or terminate that activity and seek to apply relevant sanctions.
Managers of staff working outdoors will follow the Deakin's Outdoor Work Standard.
Field work or other outdoor University activities involving students should be arranged so that students are not exposed for long periods to direct sunlight between 11am and 4pm in hot weather, or are not outdoors when the temperature is 30°C or more.
Staff organising sporting or other similarly physically demanding outdoor activities on behalf of the University or on University premises must conduct a risk assessment. The Australian Football League's "Risk Management for Football Clubs" provides a useful example. For further information see the Sport Medicine Australia's Hot Weather Guidelines. The activity should not proceed until the outcome of the risk assessment has been provided to the head of the organisational area and their approval obtained.
This Standard controls the safety aspects of outdoor work at Deakin.
Wet Bulb Globe Temperatures (WBGT) for Victoria
- Thermal Risk Assessment: Risk assessment for working in heat.