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[Two scenarios are provided. They can be used to customize the article for a particular audience.]
[Construction - A worker began installing a roof one hot sunny morning. Two hours later, he complained of feeling ill and vomited. He continued working. At 3:00 p.m., when he climbed down the ladder, he was confused and unsteady. He missed a step and fell. He was taken to the hospital and later died. His body temperature was 108 degrees.]
[Agriculture - A young worker arrived for her shift at a vineyard. She was pregnant, and her job required her to spend long hours tying grapevines in the sun. As the day wore on, the temperature soared, eventually reaching triple digits. After nine hours of work, she collapsed from heat exhaustion. Two days later, she was dead. She was 17 years old.]
Hot weather is here. When you are working outside, extreme heat is not only uncomfortable…it can kill. Last year, thousands of workers in the United States got sick from exposure to heat on the job, and more than 30 workers died. These illnesses and deaths were preventable.
BEAT THE HEAT: THREE SIMPLE STEPS
Heat illness can be prevented. Remember these three things: water, rest, and shade.
MORE STEPS TO REDUCE YOUR RISK
Here are some other ways you can prevent illness from the heat:
HEAT-RELATED ILLNESS: KNOW THE SIGNS
It’s important to know the signs of heat-related illness—acting quickly can save lives.
If you feel any of the symptoms of heat-related illness, or you see a coworker in distress, tell your supervisor right away.
OSHA CAN HELP. This year, OSHA and its State Plan partners have launched a nationwide campaign to raise employer and worker awareness of the dangers of heat and how to protect workers. Visit www.osha.gov for worker fact sheets, worksite posters, and other resources on preventing heat illness, in both English and Spanish. If you have questions, call OSHA. It's confidential. Call 1-800-321-OSHA (6742) or visit www.osha.gov to learn more about heat illness.
Illustration credits: Cal/OSHA
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