‘Stay safe in the sun’ urges chair


PUBLISHED 26 Jun 2024

IN News

Cambridgeshire Police Federation has called on the Force to ensure working conditions are ‘reasonable, safe and comfortable’ for members during the hottest spell of the year so far.

The UK Health Security Agency and the Met Office have issued a yellow heat health alert for most of England, as temperatures in Cambridge and Peterborough are set to top 28C over the next two days.

The alert indicates that the heat could pose a risk to health, particularly those who are vulnerable.

Branch chair Liz Groom has asked the Force to ensure it was doing what it could to look after members in the heat.

And she reminded officers to take personal responsibility for their health and safety.

Liz said: “We’re in the hottest period of the year so far and it can present problems for our members, particularly frontline officers who have to carry a lot of kit.

“As temperatures rise they are at more risk of heat stress, sun burn, and dehydration.

“The Force has a duty of care to protect its employees health and ensure their working conditions are reasonable, safe and comfortable.

“For members working indoors that could be access to fans, moving away from windows or blocking out the sun with blinds.

“For members on a scene it could be a canopy for some shade or avoid non-essential outside tasks when temperatures are highest.

“And I’d urge our members to take responsibility for themselves. Drink plenty of fluids, wear your caps, use sunscreen, and back at base or where it’s safe to do so, take opportunities to remove your kit and cool down.”

And Liz asked the public for understanding if they see officers on a break.

“They are only human and are entitled to a break, as much as anyone else,” she said.

“If you see an officer stopping for a drink, or a dog handler giving their dog some water, it may well be the first time they’ve had chance to stop during their shift and they haven’t got time to head back to the station.

“It’s not unreasonable for officers to be able to take a break to cool off and hydrate.”