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Worker’s comp for heat exhaustion in California

California sunshine draws in new residents from all around the world. However, in the middle of the summer, the heat can easily become too hot to handle in some working environments. Working in extremely high temperatures could lead to deadly injury, such as heat stress, heat exhaustion, heat stroke, heart failure and more. The state may penalize employers who fail to give their employees recovery periods or cooldown breaks.

If working conditions may become unbearably hot for you, read on to learn about California state laws that protect employees from the heat at work.

By California law, employers must do the following to protect employees from heat-related illnesses:

  • Provide shady areas and rest breaks lasting at least five minutes
  • Provide employees with water cooler than the ambient temperature (each person should drink four 8-ounce glasses of water)
  • Place water as close to where employees are working as is reasonable
  • Companies with an outdoor place of employment must have a heat stroke and heat illness prevention policy that includes procedures that comply with state and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) heat illness prevention standards
  • Train all employees how to prevent heat illnesses

Additional regulations may apply to industries, such as agriculture, construction, oil and gas, landscaping and transportation.

If you work in a hot environment, watch out for these heat-related illness warning signs:

  • Heat rash
  • Cramps
  • Dizziness
  • Excessive sweating
  • No sweating
  • Weakness
  • Fainting

If you or a co-worker experience any of these symptoms, seek medical attention as soon as possible.

Employers should encourage workers to take regular rest breaks, drink water and stay out of the sun If you have suffered a heat-related injury or illness at work, discuss your circumstances with a workers’ compensation attorney.

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