There's no denying that this week is a scorcher.

Which is all well and good when you're off work and can spend the day basking in the sun or getting out the paddling pool.

But it's a different story when we have to deal with the heat while sat in a stuffy office.

Our sister paper, The Mirror , has looked into what your rights are as an employee on stifling days like this.

Uncomfortable

According to the Trades Union Congress (TUC), when the workplace gets too hot it is more than just an issue about comfort.

“If the temperature goes too high then it can become a health and safety issue. If people get too hot, they risk dizziness, fainting, or even heat cramps," they argue.

“In very hot conditions the body’s blood temperature rises. If the blood temperature rises above 39°C, there is a risk of heat stroke or collapse.

"Delirium or confusion can occur above 41°C. Blood temperatures at this level can prove fatal and even if a worker does recover, they may suffer irreparable organ damage.”

The TUC wants to make it illegal to keep people at work indoors if the temperature is above 30°C and put protection in place for people working outside or driving for a living too.

Office rules

That's not happened yet – but the good news is that there are rules that can let you leave an office that's too hot, just no official maximum temperature.

“An employer must provide a working environment which is, as far as is reasonably practical, safe and without risks to health. In addition, employers have to assess risks and introduce any necessary prevention or control measures,” the TUC explains.

And if things do get too uncomfortable for you, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), who provide the regulatory framework for work place health and safety in Britain, have explained what you should do if things get unbearable.

“A meaningful maximum figure cannot be given due to the high temperatures found in, for example, glass works or foundries,” HSE explains.

The Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992 lay down particular requirements for most aspects of the working environment. Regulation 7 deals specifically with the temperature in indoor workplaces and states that:

"During working hours, the temperature in all workplaces inside buildings should be reasonable.

“However, the application of the regulation depends on the nature of the workplace, such as a bakery, a cold store, an office, a warehouse.”

Employers also have to provide “clean, fresh air” as well as keep temperatures at a comfortable level.

Risk Assessment

The good news is that, because there's no official limit, you can get action taken whatever the temperature as long as people think it's uncomfortable.

“If a significant number of employees are complaining about thermal discomfort, your employer should carry out a risk assessment, and act on the results of that assessment,” the HSE says.

If you're a more vulnerable employee – for example have a thyroid imbalance or are undergoing the menopause, or need to wear protective equipment at work so can't take off layers - that also has to be taken into account.

So it's simple - if you're uncomfortable, tell your boss. If enough people do, then they have to act.