OSHA has extended its comment period by 30 days for those interested in the Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) on Heat Injury and Illness Prevention in Outdoor and Indoor Work Settings. Comments are now due January 26, 2022, allowing stakeholders, including ISEA and its members, additional time to review and collect information and data necessary for comments.

With publication of the ANPRM on October 27, 2021, OSHA is beginning the rulemaking process to consider a heat-specific workplace standard. A standard specific to heat-related injury and illness prevention would more clearly set forth employer obligations and the measures necessary to more effectively protect employees from hazardous heat. The ultimate goal is to prevent and reduce the number of occupational injuries, illnesses, and fatalities caused by exposure to hazardous heat.

Specific Topics on which OSHA is Seeking Comments

OSHA is interested in obtaining additional information about the extent and nature of hazardous heat in the workplace and the nature and effectiveness of interventions and controls used to prevent heat illness. Recommendations should account for indoor and outdoor work environments and businesses of all different sizes. Specifically, OSHA seeks information, data sources, and examples on the following topics:

  • Occupational illnesses, injuries, and fatalities due to hazardous heat, including their under reporting and magnitude across geographic regions or among various industries, occupations, job tasks, or businesses of various sizes
  • Determinants of hazardous occupational heat exposure and heat-related illness in the workplace
  • Inequalities in exposures and outcomes among workers of color and low-wage earners
  • Structure of work and work arrangements affected by hazardous heat
  • Existing efforts on heat illness prevention, including by OSHA, states, employers, or other industry associations
  • Heat illness prevention plans and programs
  • Engineering controls, administrative controls, and personal protective equipment
  • Acclimatization
  • Physiologic and exposure monitoring
  • Planning and responding to heat illness emergencies
  • Worker training and engagement
  • Costs, economic impacts, and benefits
  • Impacts of climate change on hazardous heat exposure for outdoor and indoor work settings

Get Involved with ISEA

ISEA is currently working with members who manufacture heat stress safety equipment and products to compile comments and submit under ISEA letterhead, urging OSHA to indeed develop a heat stress standard. ISEA will offer examples of current best practices of using heat stress solutions across a variety of workplaces.

ISEA encourages interested members to also submit their own comments to OSHA.

Next ISEA Heat Stress Meeting

ISEA will convene interested members on January 11, 2022, via WebEx to discuss draft comments and other heat stress issues. Steven Schayer, who is leading the OSHA heat stress effort, will speak to OSHA’s effort in this area during this virtual meeting.

To attend and learn more about ISEA’s efforts, please contact Dan Glucksman at dglucksman@safetyequipment.org.