The organising committee for the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar has introduced cooling vests for workers building stadia for the tournament.

The vests have been designed by UK-based apparel company TechNiche and reduce a worker’s body temperature by up to 15 degrees Celsius. Thousands of vests have been delivered to workers across the country.

The Workers’ Welfare Department of Qatar’s Supreme Committee has been working with TechNiche to finetune the vests, which will be provided to steel fixers, carpenters, masons, foremen, scaffolders, banksmen and riggers.

Mahmoud Qutub, executive director of the Workers’ Welfare Department, said: “The cooling vest has the potential to transform the lives of our workers. We have spent two years exploring how best to utilise various cooling products, but many are simply not suitable for Qatar’s environment. We want our workers to really benefit from the concept of this technology and, after putting the TechNiche products through rigorous testing, they delivered impressive results.

“This is a new product, designed specifically for workers in Qatar. However, we recognise the impact such products could have for anyone working outside in hot conditions. It’s another example of developing solutions to protect our workers that also have the potential to leave a tangible human and social legacy.”

The vests are submerged in water, allowing the fabric to soak up as much water as possible. Airflows then evaporate the water contained in the vests and the more a worker moves, the more the vest will work. The vest will stay cool for up to eight hours, depending on the environment.

The Supreme Committee is already working with TechNiche to develop an air-cool suit, which it says will be the first product to be developed specifically for construction workers.

Qutub added: “The air-cool suit contains exciting technology that demonstrates the innovation goals at the heart of the first World Cup in the Arab world. It has the potential to leave a global legacy for workers operating in countries with similar climactic conditions to Qatar.”

Image: Qatar 2022 Supreme Committee