heat related illness:
window cleaning in high heat can knock you off
in direct sun exposure, high heat and humidity, is a recipe for heat
related illness' such as heat exhaustion and heat stroke. during the
course of this article, we'll look at ways to prevent, detect and
cure the symptoms of heat illness.
as an aid in publishing
accurate information, i've referenced articles from the following commercial
web site's and united states government agency sites:
department of health and human services - center for disease control
new jersey department
of health and senior services
e medicine consumer
people suffer heat-related
illness when their bodies are unable to compensate and properly cool
themselves. i wanted to address this subject because, as a professional
window cleaner, i know know first hand the powerful effects heat and
sun exposure can have on the body.
back in 1996, i
had a window cleaning company in nashville tennessee called, "music
city windows". being an alaskan and new to the nashville area,
i was ill prepared to deal will the summer heat and humidity. after
the course of a few days, while cleaning storm windows for a number
of residential clients, i fainted from heat exhaustion. due to a lack
of the right kind of fluids and sun screen, i was so dehydrated i had
to take four days off work to recuperate.
some window cleaning
jobs can allow you to stay out of the direct sun by cleaning areas in
the shade and following the shade around a building as the day passes.
unfortunately, this scenario is relatively unlikely for most residential
and commercial job sites. so, if you are forced to do window work in
the heat, here are a few tips to prevent heat related illness...
- dont wait
until youre thirsty to drink. drink a couple of glasses per
hour of liquids that do not contain caffeine, alcohol, or large amounts
of sugar, these actually cause you to lose more body fluid. a sports
beverage can replace the salt and minerals you lose in sweat. also,
avoid very cold drinks, because they can cause stomach cramps.
- protect yourself
from the sun by wearing a wide-brimmed hat, sunglasses and applying
a sunscreen of spf 15 or higher; the most effective products say broad
spectrum or uva/uvb protection on their labels.
- wear lightweight,
light-colored, loose-fitting clothing.
- try to rest often
in shady areas.
i worked a whole day in the direct sun and heat window cleaning via
a 40' man-lift at a 5 story apartment complex. i followed the prevention
techniques (above), except for the "wide-brimmed hat",
but found i needed to take greater measures to maintain proper body
so, i periodically
soaked my head, arms and legs in cold water. in addition, i soaked my
hat in cold water as well.
how you can profit wildly by integrating man-lifts into your window
cleaning or pressure washing business by clicking here).
of heat exhaustion include:
- heavy sweating
- muscle cramps
- nausea or vomiting
the skin may be
cool and moist. pulse rate will be fast and weak, and breathing will
be fast and shallow.
heat exhaustion: this condition often occurs when people exercise (work or play) in a
hot, humid place and their body fluids are lost through sweating, causing
the body to overheat.
heat stroke: this medical condition is life-threatening. the person's cooling system,
which is controlled by the brain, has stopped working, and the internal
temperature has risen to the point where brain damage or damage to other
internal organs may result (temperature may reach 105+°f).
get in and air conditioned
environment. at greater lengths, take a cool shower or bath. drink cool
nonalcoholic beverages and get plenty of rest. if heat exhaustion is
untreated, it may progress to heat stroke. seek medical attention immediately
if symptoms are severe or last longer than one hour.
i'll see you on the streets cleaning windows,
about the author: andy engstrom specializes in teaching real people how to start profitable window cleaning businesses that make $40,000 to $100,000 (or more) per year. to get instant access to all his most profitable window cleaning business strategies, tools, and resources,
visit: window cleaning business