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Last updated:

September 22, 2023


4 weeks

This course includes:

4 weeks

Badge on Completion

Certificate of completion

4 weeks


Cold stress occurs by driving down the skin temperature, and eventually the internal body temperature. When the body is unable to warm itself, serious cold-related illnesses and injuries may occur, and permanent tissue damage and death may result.

What is cold stress? Cold stress is a very serious condition that occurs when the body can no longer maintain its normal temperature. The results can be serious, especially since the outcome of it can see people that work in cold environments develop other cold-related illnesses and injuries that result in permanent tissue damage, or even death. Cold environments are defined as work conditions with low temperatures (below 10℃/50℉), high wind speed (over 40MPH), humidity, contact with cold surfaces or water and inadequate clothing. When someone is working in a cold environment, the conditions force the body to work much harder to maintain its temperature as it draws heat from the body. While it’s clear that working in below-freezing temperatures combined with inadequate clothing puts you at risk, it’s easy to overlook that all of the factors mentioned above that define a cold environment can increase your risk. So, these combined factors are why the condition can be brought about by even moderate temperatures, as working in the rain with high wind speed, but not in freezing temperatures, can still cause serious harm. A cold environment forces the body to work harder to maintain its core temperature of 98.6oF. Cold air, water, and snow all draw heat from the body. Anyone working in a cold environment is at risk of cold stress. In several industries, workers are required to work outdoors in cold environments for extended periods of time and the consequences of spending too much time working in the cold can be fatal. Cold stress is just the beginning of the issues that could follow, but it is preventable if workers are taking the relevant steps in protecting themselves when working out in cold temperatures. When a worker is used to working in cold conditions, it might be difficult to tell when they’re on the verge of this condition, or they might already have it and won’t be aware of what could follow. So, it’s important to be aware of the changes in your body when this becomes a concern, and the relevant steps you should take if you or somebody you know is at risk. We will explore what the condition is, what the symptoms are, who’s at the most risk, along with the treatments available for those already suffering, and how it can be prevented in the first instance. What are the symptoms? It’s important to understand that this isn’t the final condition if you or your workers are working in a cold environment for a lengthy period of time. It also leads to much more serious conditions such as hypothermia and frostbite. Hypothermia results when the body temperature drops too low. If this occurs, then there are numerous symptoms to look out for. These include being fatigued, excessive shivering, loss of coordination, and feeling confused or disoriented. In the later stages where the symptoms persist and the person affected doesn’t receive any treatment quickly, the skin could then also turn blue, pupils will be dilated, they will have a slow pulse, they may become unconscious, have slower breathing, and go into a coma.

Course Curriculum

    • Cold Stress 00:10:00
    • Body Heat Loss 00:05:00
    • Hypothermia 01:00:00
    • Frostbite 00:20:00
    • Protection from Hypothermia 00:10:00
    • How to protect workers 00:20:00
    • Hypothermia in water 00:30:00
    • Huddle 00:10:00
    • Cold Stress From Cold Conditions 00:05:00
    • Cold Stress Factors 00:10:00
    • Cold Environment 00:10:00
    • Hypothermia 00:25:00
    • Safety Procedures 00:10:00
    • Frostbite 00:25:00
    • Care of Frostbite 00:10:00
    • Driving Emergency 00:10:00
    • Be Prepared for a Driving Emergency 00:05:00
    • Driving Emergency Preparedness 00:05:00
    • Protection 00:10:00
    • Cold Stress Awareness Test 00:45:00

About the instructor

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