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Forecast: Very hot. What your employer should be doing to protect you on high-heat days

·1 min

Summer in North America is off to a scorching start, with a ‘heat dome’ expected to impact over half of the US population. Several areas, including Montpelier, Vermont; Syracuse, New York; and Pittsburgh, are experiencing heat levels not seen in decades. As temperatures rise, the risk of heat-related illnesses such as dehydration and heat stroke increases. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires employers to protect workers from heat hazards, regardless of whether they work indoors or outdoors. While there is no specific federal regulation on heat illness prevention, OSHA provides recommendations for employers, including having a heat illness prevention plan, providing adequate water and rest breaks, and monitoring workers for signs of heat illness. If workers believe their employer is not providing a safe working environment, they can file a confidential complaint with OSHA.