(c) 2010-2024 Jon L Gelman, All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, June 15, 2024

East Coast Braces for Heat Dome: Workers Face Brutal Conditions

The East Coast is in for a sweltering week as a heat dome settles over the region. Temperatures are expected to soar into the high 90s or even triple digits, posing a significant health risk for outdoor workers and those in non-air-conditioned environments.

Impact on Workers

Heat exhaustion and heatstroke are serious dangers for workers exposed to extreme heat. Symptoms of heat exhaustion include heavy sweating, nausea, dizziness, and headaches. Left untreated, heat exhaustion can progress to heatstroke, a life-threatening condition. Construction workers, landscapers, road crews, and agricultural workers are particularly vulnerable. However, indoor workers in warehouses or kitchens without proper air conditioning can be at risk.

Protecting Workers from Heat Stress

Both employers and workers have a role to play in preventing heat-related illness. Here are some key steps:

  • Employers:
    • Schedule work during cooler hours: Reschedule non-essential outdoor work to early mornings or evenings.
    • Provide shade and hydration: Offer shaded areas for breaks and ensure easy access to cool water throughout the workday.
    • Allow frequent breaks: Encourage workers to take frequent breaks in cool, shaded areas.
    • Monitor workers: Be aware of signs of heat stress and allow workers to cool down if needed.
    • Provide proper clothing: Encourage workers to wear loose-fitting, lightweight, light-colored clothing.
  • Workers:
    • Stay hydrated: Drink plenty of fluids, even if you don't feel thirsty.
    • Take breaks in the shade: Seek out cool, shaded areas to rest and cool down.
    • Wear appropriate clothing: Opt for loose-fitting, lightweight, light-colored clothing.
    • Know the signs of heat stress: Be aware of symptoms like heavy sweating, nausea, dizziness, and headaches. Report any concerns to a supervisor immediately.

Looking Ahead

Due to climate change, extreme heat events are becoming more frequent and severe. By taking proactive measures, employers and workers can work together to prevent heat-related illness and ensure a safe working environment during these heat waves.

Related Articles
OSHA Heat Illness Prevention
NIOSH Heat Stress Information
NOAA Heat Safety Information
Heat Safety Information from Multiple Government Resources


Recommended Citation: Gelman, Jon L.,  East Coast Braces for Heat Dome: Workers Face Brutal Conditions, (06/15/2024)



*Jon L. Gelman of Wayne, NJ, is the author of NJ Workers’ Compensation Law (West-Thomson-Reuters) and co-author of the national treatise Modern Workers’ Compensation Law (West-Thomson-Reuters). For over five decades, the Law Offices of Jon Gelman  1.973.696.7900 
 has represented injured workers and their families who have suffered occupational illnesses and diseases.

Blog: Workers' Compensation

LinkedIn: JonGelman

LinkedIn Group: Injured Workers Law & Advocacy Group

Author: "Workers' Compensation Law" West-Thomson-Reuters

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© 2024 Jon L Gelman. All rights reserved.

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