Special Issue "Occupational Health and Safety: Outdoor Workers and Sun Exposure"

A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601). This special issue belongs to the section "Global Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 May 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Chiara Burattini
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Astronautical, Electrical and Energy Engineering, Sapienza University, 00184 Rome, Italy
Interests: solar radiation; photobiology; non-visual effects of light; nvironmental comfort; sense of security; attention; affect
Dr. Alberto Modenese
E-Mail Website
Assistant Guest Editor
Department of Biomedical, Metabolic and Neural Sciences, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, 41125 Modena, Italy
Interests: occupational health and safety; epidemiology of occupational diseases; ionizing and non-ionizing radiation exposure; occupational medicine, workers' health; prevention at workplaces; exposure to occup
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Dr. Andrea Militello
E-Mail Website
Assistant Guest Editor
Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Epidemiology and Hygiene, INAIL, via Fontana Candida 1, 00078 Monte Porzio Catone (RM), Rome, Italy
Interests: spectral and radiometric measurements; coherent and incoherent optical radiations; solar radiation exposure; chemical analysis; synthesis and purification of organic substances
Prof. Dr. Giacomo Salvadori
E-Mail Website1 Website2
Assistant Guest Editor
Building Physics Laboratory, School of Engineering, University of Pisa, 56122 Pisa, Italy
Interests: sustainable buildings; energy performance of lighting systems; building acoustics; visual ergonomics of workplaces; indoor environmental quality
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Outdoor workers are a risk category, since they are exposed to solar radiation (SR) everyday for many hours. Sun overexposure is responsible for adverse effects on the human body, such as damage to the skin and eyes, but exposure limits related to certain effects are still not defined, since they depend on many factors, including personal characteristics. Nevertheless, several methods have been proposed to define the amount of SR received by the body and guidelines have been provided by international organizations.

Sun exposure is highly variable as it is the result of many environmental factors, such as sky conditions, period of the year, time of day/night, latitude, altitude, albedo, etc. For this reason, exposure differs from one worker to another and the assessment of the received dose is personal; various methods for its estimation have been proposed in the literature, but the measure of the real dose is still an open issue. Personal protection is widely recommended, but often, outdoor workers do not use it.

In this Special Issue, we are interested in submissions in areas including, but not limited to, the measurement of SR and exposure of outdoor workers; correlations between sun exposure and the development of diseases; advances in treatments for sun related diseases, as well as in prevention and protection systems; innovations in monitoring the personal exposure of workers; definitions of new quantities, measurement systems, and techniques.

Dr. Chiara Burattini
Dr. Alberto Modenese
Dr. Andrea Militello
Prof. Dr. Giacomo Salvadori
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2300 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • radiation measurements
  • exposure assessment
  • adverse effects on human body
  • workers protections
  • technologies for workers’ safety
  • overexposure prevention
  • workers’ risk categories
  • quantities and measurement units
  • national and international standards

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
Evaluation of a Wearable Non-Invasive Thermometer for Monitoring Ear Canal Temperature during Physically Demanding (Outdoor) Work
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(9), 4896; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18094896 - 04 May 2021
Viewed by 388
Abstract
Aimed at preventing heat strain, health problems, and absenteeism among workers with physically demanding occupations, a continuous, accurate, non-invasive measuring system may help such workers monitor their body (core) temperature. The aim of this study is to evaluate the accuracy and explore the [...] Read more.
Aimed at preventing heat strain, health problems, and absenteeism among workers with physically demanding occupations, a continuous, accurate, non-invasive measuring system may help such workers monitor their body (core) temperature. The aim of this study is to evaluate the accuracy and explore the usability of the wearable non-invasive Cosinuss° °Temp thermometer. Ear canal temperature was monitored in 49 workers in real-life working conditions. After individual correction, the results of the laboratory and field study revealed high correlations compared to ear canal infrared thermometry for hospital use. After performance of the real-life working tasks, this correlation was found to be moderate. It was also observed that the ambient environmental outdoor conditions and personal protective clothing influenced the accuracy and resulted in unrealistic ear canal temperature outliers. It was found that the Cosinuss° °Temp thermometer did not result in significant interference during work. Therefore, it was concluded that, without a correction factor, the Cosinuss° °Temp thermometer is inaccurate. Nevertheless, with a correction factor, the reliability of this wearable ear canal thermometer was confirmed at rest, but not in outdoor working conditions or while wearing a helmet or hearing protection equipment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Occupational Health and Safety: Outdoor Workers and Sun Exposure)
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Open AccessArticle
Solar Ultraviolet Radiation Risk Estimates—A Comparison of Different Action Spectra and Detector Responsivities
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(9), 4887; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18094887 - 04 May 2021
Viewed by 345
Abstract
Studies assessing the dose–response relationship for human skin cancer induction by solar ultraviolet radiation (UVR) apply a range of methods to quantify relevant UVR doses, but information about the comparability of these datasets is scarce. We compared biologically weighted effectivities applying the most [...] Read more.
Studies assessing the dose–response relationship for human skin cancer induction by solar ultraviolet radiation (UVR) apply a range of methods to quantify relevant UVR doses, but information about the comparability of these datasets is scarce. We compared biologically weighted effectivities applying the most relevant UVR action spectra in order to test the ability of certain UVR detectors to mimic these biological effects at different times during the day and year. Our calculations were based on solar spectra measured at Dortmund, Germany (51.5° N) and at Townsville, Australia (19.3° S), or computed for latitudes 20° S and 50° N. Convolutions with the CIE action spectra for erythema and non-melanoma skin cancer (NMSC) and with ICNIRP’s weighting function showed comparable solar zenith angle (SZA) dependences with little influence of season or latitude. A different SZA dependence was found with Setlow’s action spectrum for melanoma induction. Calculations for a number of UVR detector responsivities gave widely discrepant absolute irradiances and doses, which were nevertheless related to those calculated with both CIE spectra by correction factors largely independent of the SZA. Commonly used detectors can thus provide quite accurate estimates of NMSC induction by solar UVR, whereas they may be inadequate to mimic melanoma induction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Occupational Health and Safety: Outdoor Workers and Sun Exposure)
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Open AccessArticle
Impact of COVID-19 Lockdown on Sun Exposure of UK Office Workers
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(8), 4362; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18084362 - 20 Apr 2021
Viewed by 313
Abstract
The impact of lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic in April–June 2020 on UV exposure of office workers was assessed using an online survey on time spent outdoors and environmental data for different locations in the UK. Without the need for commuting and [...] Read more.
The impact of lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic in April–June 2020 on UV exposure of office workers was assessed using an online survey on time spent outdoors and environmental data for different locations in the UK. Without the need for commuting and with the flexibility of homeworking, weekday time spent outdoors was higher in the 2020 lockdown than in the same period in 2017. The weekday erythema effective radiant exposure was higher in 2020 due to an additional 45 min outdoors in the late afternoon that was not observed in 2017 and high UV levels due to extremely sunny weather in spring. The lockdown did not impact the frequency of time spent outdoors around midday, which was still governed by work commitments, and at the weekends, no difference between 2020 and 2017 was observed. In 2020, responders felt that time outdoors was very important for their health and well-being. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Occupational Health and Safety: Outdoor Workers and Sun Exposure)
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