Singapore recorded the hottest May this year. And while we may have appreciated working from home in 2020 and 2021, may personnel have been working in the field and the construction sites through these years.
Its been so hot that one full time national serviceman, NSF, explained that the weather was soo hot that you could roast baby back ribs in his boots and they would come out well-done.
We all appreciate the sacrifice that National Servicemen have given and we do how that they enjoy their baby back ribs in proper eateries.
We also have to look at the people working in process plants, construction sites and shipyards. There are also workers involved in road resurfacing and that means they work with hot equipment and hot substances on top of dealing with the weather and literally no shade.
NSFs, field workers, process workers, construction workers and shipyard workers don't have the luxury of getting 'air-con"
Thankfully Singapore Armed Forces SAF as well as many other employers have implemented safety measures to prevent and combat heat-related illnesses however NSFs would still feel the effects of the intense heat there is no escaping that.
When the TODAY media spoke to some of the NSFs this is what they said
"It was extremely hot when I was in the sun and my black boots felt like they were on fire,"
"It felt like a sauna outdoors. I also sweat so much I could not urinate throughout the day."
Some measures implemented by SAF are cutting off exercises at a certain temperature, giving NSFs a stipulated amount of time to rest, hydration regimes, acclimatization programs and providing NSFs with water breaks, having medical teams on standby and to arrive within 10 minutes if there are signs of heat injury.
Its important that SAF as well as companies have safety measures to prevent heat injuries.
The intense heat and weather of May this year has been a pain for construction workers, too.
One of the roofing workers interviewed by TODAY said that he has developed cramps and even a heat stroke.
Construction companies said they have a host of mitigating measures to help workers beat the heat from reminders to workers to drink more water, to organising water breaks for workers, to having water containers on standby, rotation of workers, shelters for workers to have rest breaks.
However some of the workers interviewed also mentioned that they were not able to find an escape from the heat after work in the dorms. Some of the workers dorms are generally overcrowded with 10-15 workers in a room. Even with fans it can feel suffocating.
While office workers and people working from home have some control over their environment, lets have a thought for those working in the field.