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Summer Months Raise Concern for Heat-related Work Injuries in Georgia

A national outreach initiative by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration aims to educate employees and their employers about the potential hazards of working outside as heat can drastically affect one’s health. A number of steps need to be taken to prevent these possible heat-related work injuries in Georgia and elsewhere. The initiative was announced late last month by Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis, according to the Occupational Safety & Health Administration.
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“If you’re working outdoors, you’re at risk for heat-related illnesses that can cause serious medical problems and even death,” said Secretary Solis. “But heat illness can be prevented. This Labor Department campaign will reach across the country with a very simple message – water, rest and shade.”

Our Georgia workers’ compensations attorneys understand what outdoor workers face in the Georgia weather, especially during the summer months. It is important that these workers take a number of precautionary steps in an attempt to preserve their health and well-being while working outdoors in the hot summer months.

Every year, thousands of outdoor laborers experience the effects of heat illness as it often manifests as heat exhaustion. If this condition is not quickly addressed, head exhaustion can turn into heat stroke. Heat stroke took the lives of more than 30 workers last year.

“As we move into the summer months, it is very important for workers and employers to take the steps necessary to stay safe in extreme heat,” said OSHA Assistant Secretary Dr. David Michaels. “Drinking water often, taking breaks and limiting time in the heat are simple, effective ways to prevent heat illness.”

Jobs including agriculture, construction, landscaping, airport baggage handling, road repair and even car sales can face great danger from working in the heat.

In an effort to educate workers and employers, OSHA has created heat illness educational materials in both English and Spanish. They’ve even created a curriculum that can be used in the workplace for safety training. In addition, a new OSHA Web page is available and provides information and resources of heat illness issues including what to do in a heat-related emergency and how to prevent it on the job.

To further efforts, OSHA has partnered with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to create weather alerts that will include worker safety precautions to be issued when heat alerts are in effects across the country.

All workers and employers are asked to be safe during the upcoming summer months as heat related illnesses can cause serious injury, or even death, if not properly recognized and treated.

The lawyers at the Law Offices of J. Franklin Burns, P.C., have the experience to help you gain the benefits you are entitled to under the Georgia workers’ compensation program. Call for a free and confidential appointment to discuss your rights. Call 1-404-303-7770.