What do you think is a reasonable work-rest period when cleaning Gulf Coast beaches in 98-degree weather while wearing a Tyvek suit?

20 minutes on and 20 off
30 minutes on and 30 minutes off
1 hour on and 30 minutes off
2 hours on and 1 hour off
I don't know


Tue, Jul 27, 2010 Adolfo Valdes-Agrait Puerto Rico

Even though temperature should be the most important factor to consider, other factors migh come into play. How far from rest area once you stop working?, is transportation to the area available? This activity should be considered as a Post-Emergency clean up. OSHA allows the use of respirable cloth suits in high temperatures areas as cited in letters of interpretation published.
Standard Interpretation Letter of 09/11/95

….”OSHA believes that this performance-based language already allows MSRC the flexibility to select the [necessary equipment] to protect employees from the hazards that exist during marine response activities. MSRC must evaluate the hazards (including slips, trips, falls, and heat stress) present during the operation and modify the PPE to protect against those existing hazards. If MSRC determines that inhalation hazards are not present, then using PPE to protect against inhalation hazards would be unnecessary”.

“…. In addition, there are critical heat stress issues associated with wearing of certain types of PPE (I.e. Tyvek suits) during oil spill response activities in marine environment and adjoining shorelines when the weather/temperature is in i.e. , Gulf of Mexico, ……Hawaii and Puerto Rico/U.S. Virgin Islands.”

Perhaps this current scenario warrants the analysis and consideration of these working protocols. Thank you, Adolfo Valdes-Agrait

Tue, Jul 27, 2010 Dave Plymouth, MA

Is wearing a Tyvek suit really necessary? I would think if workers were wearing boots and gloves, along with their street clothes, they would have adequate protection. Wearing Tyvek is very difficult in that kind of heat and humidity.

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