Thinkstock
Ehstoday 3211 Thinkstockphotos 537240506

Crewman Dies After Heat-Related Hospitalization

Sept. 28, 2016
Crewman is hospitalized after core body temperature soars above 108 degrees; OSHA fines Townsend Tree Service Company after investigation.

A 23-year-old ground crewman is one of 16 heat-related deaths reported to OSHA since January.

The Townsend Tree Service Company worker collapsed after working more than nine hours in the direct sun when the heat index soared to 110 degrees near Poplar Bluff, Ind. on July 22. The crewman died after being hospitalized with a core body temperature above 108 degrees.

OSHA issued the company, based in Muncie, Ind., one serious citation following its investigation. Proposed penalties total $12,471.

"Heat-related illnesses and deaths are preventable when employers help workers acclimate to hot environments, allow frequent water breaks, ample time to rest and provide shade," said Bill McDonald, OSHA's area director in St. Louis in a statement. "Working in full sunlight can increase heat index values by 15 degrees Fahrenheit. Employers must keep this in mind and plan additional precautions for working in these conditions."

In order to help reduce heat-related incidents, OSHA recommends:

  • Train supervisors and other employees in the proper response to employees reporting heat-induced illness symptoms, which includes stopping work, moving to a cool place, and providing help, evaluation and medical assistance.
  • Require trained supervisors to go into the field and conduct in-person evaluations of employees complaining of heat-induced symptoms.
  • Establish work rules and practices that encourage employees to seek assistance and evaluation when experiencing heat stress symptoms.

Heat stroke is a medical emergency. If there is any suggestion of heat stroke, call 911 and institute the other safety measures as quickly as possible. To learn more about heat-stress symptoms see OSHA's Heat Stress Quick Card http://www.osha.gov/Publications/osha3154.pdf

OSHA's Heat Safety Tool App is available to employers, employees and the public for free download on iPhones and Android phones.

Sponsored Recommendations

ISO 45001: Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems (OHSMS)

March 28, 2024
ISO 45001 certification – reduce your organizational risk and promote occupational health and safety (OHS) by working with SGS to achieve certification or migrate to the new standard...

Want to Verify your GHG Emissions Inventory?

March 28, 2024
With the increased focus on climate change, measuring your organization’s carbon footprint is an important first action step. Our Green House Gas (GHG) verification services provide...

Download Free ESG White Paper

March 28, 2024
The Rise and Challenges of ESG – Your Journey to Enhanced Sustainability, Brand and Investor Potential

Work Safety Tips: 5 Tactics to Build Employee Engagement for Workplace Safety

March 13, 2024
Employee safety engagement strategies have become increasingly key to fostering a safer workplace environment. But, how exactly do you encourage employee buy-in when it comes ...

Voice your opinion!

To join the conversation, and become an exclusive member of EHS Today, create an account today!