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Is it too hot to work? This is what the law says

PUBLISHED: 17:42 27 June 2018 | UPDATED: 20:06 27 June 2018

Temperatures have been high in Norwich this week.  PHOTO: Antony Kelly

Temperatures have been high in Norwich this week. PHOTO: Antony Kelly

Archant Norfolk 2016

As a heat wave sweeps across the UK you might be wondering what it means for your working rights.

The truth is there is no set temperature at which your workers’ rights are breached; the law is actually quite vague.

The Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations state: “During working hours, the temperature in all workplaces inside buildings shall be reasonable.”

But what does “reasonable” mean? Ultimately it’s down to you and your co-workers.

With no set temperature stated in the law, you should inform your boss of uncomfortable heat and if enough people complain they must act on it.

As the Health and Safety Executive explains: “If a significant number of employees are complaining about thermal discomfort, your employer should carry out a risk assessment, and act on the results of that assessment”.

While there is no law on a specific temperature yet, the Trade Union Congress wants to make it illegal to keep people at work indoors if the temperature is above 30°C.

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