Go to top of page

New resource to protect outdoor workers

15 July 2019

In Australia, skin cancer accounts for around 80% of all newly diagnosed cancers each year and UV radiation from the sun is one of the leading causes of skin cancer. With high UV radiation year-round in many parts of Australia, people who regularly work outside face a higher risk of developing cancer from sun exposure.

ARPANSA is proud to have contributed to the Cancer Council’s new resource for people who work outdoors and their employers. Skin cancer and outdoor work— A work health and safety guide provides workers with information and strategies on identifying and managing UV radiation as a workplace hazard.

Adequate sun protection, including regular application of sunscreen, wearing UV-resistant protective clothing and minimising exposure during peak UV periods are essential to protecting workers from the hazard presented by UV exposure from the sun.

The new guide was prepared with technical input from ARPANSA. Dr Rick Tinker, Section Manager, Assessment and Advice at ARPANSA stated, ‘there has been a strong focus on protecting people from the overheating risks related to outdoor work, but not a strong focus on the long term impacts of UV exposure. This resource is vital in helping develop good safety practices within a group that is at higher risk than many sectors of the community.’

The guide includes a sample UV policy, risk assessment template and toolbox resources for workplaces to use as well as clear guidance for individual workers.

‘It’s a great resource for employers, health and safety representatives and all employees who work outdoors’, said Dr Tinker.

Access the guide and other information about sun protection in the workplace on the Cancer Council website.