This summer’s heat continues to take a toll on workers across the country. In this case, four workers at one work-site needed treatment for heat exposure.
About two dozen employees of United States Roofing Co. were removing shingles and replacing the roof on a middle school in Upper Chichester, PA. One man, who was tarring part of the roof, had collapsed and was lowered by basket. Emergency crews who responded say as that man was being stablized, a second man on the roof collapsed. He was also lowered to the ground by basket.
As the second man was being lowered, emergency crews received word of another man on another roof and a fourth man under a tree trying to recover from the heat.
Of the four workers, two were treated and released and the two others were held at a local hospital overnight.
Water, rest, shade
OSHA has five key pieces of advice for keeping workers safe in hot weather:
- Drink water every 15 minutes, even if you’re not thirsty
- Rest in the shade to cool down
- Wear a hat and light-colored clothing
- Learn the signs of heat illness and what to do in an emergency, and
- Keep an eye on fellow workers.
OSHA sums up its summer heat campaign in just three words: Water, rest, shade.
The agency says it’s important for employees to watch out for their co-workers too because people who become ill from the heat often don’t realize it.
Some of the signs that a person is developing heat exhaustion are:
- dizziness or fainting
- wet skin
- thirst, and
- nausea or vomiting.
Workers who faint, feel confused or vomit need help immediately.
OSHA doesn’t have a heat stress standard, but it can issue citations to companies under its General Duty Clause.
California and Washington state have their own heat stress standards that they enforce.