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Sweat Contamination in High Temperature Environments

Sweat high temperature perspiration

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#1 QAMgr79

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Posted 29 May 2014 - 06:04 PM

i everyone. I am new to this forum, but I wanted to jump in with a question I have been toying with at my facility. This is the first time I am working in a high temperature environment where exposure to extreme sweat may pose an issue. I have asked the employees how they handled the hot temperatures last Summer and they said that they were allowed to wear sweat bands to prevent sweat from rolling off of their foreheads.

 

I would love to hear some feedback from anyone who has experience dealing with this risk. 

 

Do you allow your employees to don sweat bands on their foreheads under hairnets to help prevent perspiration from entering the product? 

 

Are hairnet and beard-nets efficient in stopping perspiration from rolling off of the face? 

 

THANKS!



#2 Hankesg

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Posted 29 May 2014 - 06:34 PM

The hairnets we use at our facility are very thin and would not soak up any appreciable amount of moisture.

 

I could see letting people wear sweatbands as long as they are underneath hairnets.



#3 Setanta

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Posted 29 May 2014 - 06:51 PM

I can't speak to the beard net being any help with perspiration, but sweat bands are about the best defense for sweat from the hairline. Get plenty and change them often. Also, there are moisture bands that drape over someone's neck to help keep the pulse points cool. They do not drip and can be a be help. http://industrialsaf...ts/940-12P.html

If at all possible, stage water coolers around the facility so no one has to go far to keep hydrated. They do have a cool break room, I presume? If you can plan extra breaks in the cooler temps, you will make for a happier workforce (maybe only be degrees...pun intended)

Best of Luck and keep cool!
Setanta


Edited by Setanta, 29 May 2014 - 06:53 PM.

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#4 Snookie

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Posted 29 May 2014 - 08:48 PM

Welcome!!

 

I too am in a hot environment, although we have not had a big challenge with sweat.  We have many fans stationed throughout the area and water coolers everywhere.  But I would agree that sweatbands would be acceptable if under the hair net. 


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#5 Quality Ben

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Posted 29 May 2014 - 11:44 PM

If you are using sweat bands then I would treat them like other non disposable PPE - you would need to prove they are not a contamination / pathogen issue.

Are they laundered? Do employees put a fresh one on every day, every break ?



#6 QAMgr79

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Posted 30 May 2014 - 06:47 PM

Thank you everyone.

Yes I immediately thought that the sweat bands could pose as a microbial nightmare, like Quality Ben mentioned. However I planned on establishing some guidelines (ex. providing a clean one at the start of each shift, having a controlled location for dirty band collection, etc.).

 

The employees do have a cool breakroom to utilize, however I never thought of bringing water coolers or fans onto the floor. I would think these things would be frowned upon by any auditing body. Is that not the case? Has anyone ever had an auditor comment on this?



#7 Hankesg

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Posted 30 May 2014 - 07:27 PM

We have fans in certain places year round and have already started putting out drink stations with Gatorade. Summer is just getting underway here in MI, but the room with our fryers has already reached 115°F.

 

We have covers/filters (pretty much exactly like this) on our industrial fans. Drink stations are in designated areas only (by drinking fountains and hand wash sinks with their own garbage bin).

 

I don't see an auditor having a problem with this if you do a proper assessment, draw up a policy with controls, and enforce/monitor those controls.


Edited by Hankesg, 30 May 2014 - 07:28 PM.


#8 Snookie

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Posted 30 May 2014 - 07:33 PM

Fans depend on your environment.  They are acceptable in ours and they are on a cleaning schedule.


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#9 QAMgr79

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Posted 30 May 2014 - 07:38 PM

Our product would be exposed at the batching tank when ingredients are being loaded into it, and at the filling station. The product is enclosed in piping at all points in between.

 

Snookie do you do air sampling also as part as your risk assessment with the fans?



#10 Snookie

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Posted 30 May 2014 - 07:43 PM

We haven't but then we are doing packaging and our final product checks including microbial have all been really good. 


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#11 Avila

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Posted 31 May 2014 - 03:26 AM

Last time we have the same problem (we are in tropic country) so we install air condition units in production area :happydance:

Doing air sampling for microbial test regularly.

IMO, wearing sweat band and put Fan in processing room is OK as long as you have an adequate procedures



#12 fgjuadi

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Posted 01 June 2014 - 11:11 AM

Sweat contaminating product?  Gross. 

When I worked in the desert with no A/C, we provided water coolers in designated areas, 45 min on 15 off work rest schedule, had fans, cleaned the fans once a week, swabbed a random fan in the high hygiene zone once a week, and installed fans with an airflow map that showed they were moving air from the high hygiene to the low hygiene zones. 

Sweatbands do sound pretty disgusting, maybe they have disposable ones?  Humans are so gross. 

A/C was way too expensive, but we ended up installing "Big Ass Fans" on the ceiling which really did the trick.  Our maintenance was really thrilled with being able to say "Big Ass" all day.


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#13 Setanta

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Posted 02 June 2014 - 12:10 PM

 

Sweat contaminating product?  Gross.
Sweatbands do sound pretty disgusting, maybe they have disposable ones?  Humans are so gross. 
A/C was way too expensive, but we ended up installing "Big Ass Fans" on the ceiling which really did the trick.  Our maintenance was really thrilled with being able to say "Big Ass" all day.


Sweatbands ARE disgusting. Change them often! We have foam ones that come in a bag, 100 at a time.
Humans ARE gross. Separate rant: see Neil degrasse Tyson on the bodies' postioning of pleasure and evacuation centers.

Maintenance is the same everywhere. :D

Edited by Setanta, 02 June 2014 - 12:11 PM.

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#14 QAMgr79

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Posted 02 June 2014 - 12:48 PM

Yes, the A/C would be lovely in our production rooms but it would definitely be too pricey. I have started looking into purchasing some big floor fans with filters, and into the disposable sweat bands. 

 

Thank you to everyone who provided feedback!   :biggrin:



#15 Setanta

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Posted 02 June 2014 - 12:55 PM

Remember to give us reputation points? :)

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#16 Mr. Incognito

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Posted 02 June 2014 - 01:43 PM

I worked in a plant that had a fairly warm environment that provided Gatoraid in water coolers but they weren't directly on the floor.  One was stationed in the processing control room and the other was in the bottom floor of a tower building in the packaging area. 

 

The Gatoraid was made in the break room and on a cart that was trucked through the floor to the distribution points...  We weren't FSSC yet at the place so I don't know if they had to stop doing that for certification.  But when you were hot and tired it was delicious and kept you going.  Water would really probably be just as good though you wouldn't get the electrolytes.


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#17 QAMgr79

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Posted 02 June 2014 - 02:59 PM

Remember to give us reputation points? :)

Thank you!



#18 QAMgr79

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Posted 02 June 2014 - 03:00 PM

Setanta, if you tell me how to do that I will!! :0) newbie here. 



#19 Mr. Incognito

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Posted 02 June 2014 - 03:20 PM

For an explanation on how to give reputation please see Simon's post here:

 

http://www.ifsqn.com...h-motm-program/

 

The very short version is you can click the little green arrow on the right side of someone's post if you feel that, by their contribution to the conversation, they have gained reputation as someone of knowledge in the forums.


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#20 QAMgr79

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Posted 02 June 2014 - 05:36 PM

For an explanation on how to give reputation please see Simon's post here:

 

http://www.ifsqn.com...h-motm-program/

 

The very short version is you can click the little green arrow on the right side of someone's post if you feel that, by their contribution to the conversation, they have gained reputation as someone of knowledge in the forums.

great! Thank you for linking that post. 



#21 Mr. Incognito

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Posted 02 June 2014 - 05:59 PM

great! Thank you for linking that post. 

 

You're welcome.


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#22 jaygil

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 07:13 PM

Setanta-

Do you use those cooling bands in production areas? Do they dispose of them at end of shift?

Have you heard any concerns from auditor / regulatory inspectors?

Has anyone else on this forum had experience with these?



#23 Setanta

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 08:10 PM

 

Setanta-
Do you use those cooling bands in production areas? Do they dispose of them at end of shift?
Have you heard any concerns from auditor / regulatory inspectors?
Has anyone else on this forum had experience with these?


I have not used them recently, so no, I do not have any experience with them under an auditing situation. IMEX, they were worn during the shift, washed and dried after the shift, to be reworn the next day.

But that was more than 10 years ago. Can anyone else be of assistance here? Pretty Please? :)

Edited by Setanta, 05 June 2014 - 08:10 PM.

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#24 Barrie@RJT

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Posted 09 June 2014 - 11:04 AM

Sweat contaminating product?  Gross. 

When I worked in the desert with no A/C, we provided water coolers in designated areas, 45 min on 15 off work rest schedule, had fans, cleaned the fans once a week, swabbed a random fan in the high hygiene zone once a week, and installed fans with an airflow map that showed they were moving air from the high hygiene to the low hygiene zones. 

Sweatbands do sound pretty disgusting, maybe they have disposable ones?  Humans are so gross. 

A/C was way too expensive, but we ended up installing "Big Ass Fans" on the ceiling which really did the trick.  Our maintenance was really thrilled with being able to say "Big Ass" all day.

I guess sweat IS gross - but what about dew drops (nose....) when working in a cold environment....!!??  How does one hygienically remove offending drops before they become drips....onto the food...ugh!!??







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