Over 800 Saudi companies are ‘ignoring summer midday work ban’

The sun is seen during a massive sandstorm in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. (File Photo:AP)

More than 800 establishments were found to be violating the Saudi Ministry of Labor and Social Development’s directive on midday work ban during the summer months.

The violations were detected during inspections by the ministry’s teams since June 15 when the restrictions were enforced, a senior official has said.

Dr. Fahad Al-Owaidi, deputy minister for inspection and development of work environment at the ministry, said 829 establishments have failed to comply with the regulation with 966 violations were registered by inspection teams.

The deputy minister stressed that the ministry would spare no effort to implement work ban under the hot sun from 12 noon until 3 p.m. so as to protect the safety and health of workers in the private sector as well as ensure a proper work environment keeping in view the related standards.

Employers must take necessary measures to prevent workers from any harm as they have to follow to the ministerial decision prohibiting “allowing the employee to work under the direct sun from 12 noon to 3 p.m. during the period from 15th June to 15th September of every Gregorian calendar”.

Oil and gas workers as well as maintenance workers on emergency duty have been exempted from the regulation, providing that measures must be taken to protect them from the hazards of scorching sun.

The exemption has been restricted to some parts of the Kingdom due to fluctuating temperatures since some cities and rural areas do not encounter extremely hot weather, which does not require such suspension of work during the mentioned period, explained Al-Owaidi.

Al-Owaidi urged employers to abide by the midday work ban as per the ministry’s unswerving efforts to maintain a suitable working environment against diverse dangers as well as implement measures to limit work injuries and accidents, leading to the improvement of production level.

This article first appeared in the Saudi Gazette on Aug. 3, 2016.

Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:49 - GMT 06:49