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New Rule Seeks to Protect California's Indoor Workers from Extreme Heat

In a significant move to enhance worker safety, California's workplace safety board approved a long-overdue rule aimed at reducing the risks of extreme heat for indoor workers.

What does it mean for you as a worker?

This rule applies to most employers, excluding state prisons and local jails, and offers vital protections for employees in warehouses, restaurant kitchens, manufacturing plants, and other indoor workplaces without adequate air conditioning.

The Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board unanimously approved the rule and urged the Office of Administrative Law to expedite its implementation, hoping it will take effect by August. Under the normal administrative schedule, the rule is set to be enforced starting in October, leaving workers vulnerable for the rest of the summer.

The new regulation mandates several measures to ensure worker safety in high-temperature environments. When temperatures reach 82 degrees Fahrenheit, employers are required to provide cooling areas and monitor workers for signs of heat illness. If the temperature hits 87 degrees, or if workers are near a heat source or wearing restrictive clothing, additional steps must be taken:

  • Cooling the worksite to 82 degrees or lower, if feasible;

  • Adjusting schedules, allowing more breaks, slowing production rates, or rotating workers;

  • Providing protective equipment such as personal fans or cooling vests as a last resort.

These protections will improve indoor working conditions for thousands of warehouse workers, especially in regions like the Inland Empire where summers are getting hotter.

Excessive heat can cause severe health issues, including nausea, vomiting, fainting, and heat stroke, which can lead to organ damage or death. Between 2010 and 2017, seven workers in California died from indoor heat exposure. Regulators aim to reduce workplace heat injuries by 40% by 2030.

As temperatures rise, it is crucial for employers to adhere to these new regulations to ensure the health and safety of their workers. If you are facing unsafe conditions at work, it’s important to know your rights and seek legal assistance if necessary.

Preventative measures, comprehensive training, and adherence to safety regulations are critical for protecting California's workforce from heat hazards. 

In the event of a work-related accident, swift measures to report and document the incident are critical. Detailed records and immediate medical attention can be pivotal in workers' compensation claims. Having an experienced lawyer on your side is essential to navigate the complexities of these claims and ensure fair compensation. Legal expertise can provide guidance on rights and responsibilities, ensuring that injured workers receive the support they need to recover and return to work safely.

If you or someone you know is hurt during work hours, it is imperative to take swift action. Contacting GHWorkLaw as soon as possible can ensure that you navigate the legal process effectively and meet crucial deadlines.

Why Consult GHWorkLaw?

  1. Legal Expertise: Workers' compensation laws can be complex. A skilled lawyer specializing in workers' comp cases can provide the legal expertise needed to understand and navigate the intricacies of the law.

  2. Protecting Your Rights: A lawyer will work to safeguard your rights, ensuring that you receive the compensation you deserve for medical expenses, lost wages, and potential long-term effects of your injuries.

  3. Meeting Deadlines: Workers' compensation claims have strict deadlines. Failing to meet these timelines could jeopardize your case. A lawyer will guide you through the process, ensuring all necessary paperwork is filed promptly.

  4. Maximizing Compensation: Our legal team can assess the full extent of your injuries and losses, helping you pursue the maximum compensation available under workers' compensation laws.

Your well-being is paramount, and legal support ensures you receive the care and benefits you are entitled to under California law. Call us for a free consultation: 1-877-422-4454. Note: We speak Spanish, Farsi, Arabic, Russian, Armenian, and many more languages.


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