On July 27, the Department of Labor (DOL) announced that the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) issued a hazard alert for heat. This action is to remind employers of their obligation to protect workers against heat illness or injury in outdoor and indoor workplaces. The agencies will also step up inspections and enforcement of heat-safety violations in high-risk industries, including construction.
This announcement comes on the heels of a press conference where President Biden asked the DOL to issue the advisory and ramp up enforcement of heat safety violations. “DOL will ramp up enforcement of heat-safety violations, increasing inspections in high-risk industries like construction and agriculture, while OSHA continues to develop a national standard for workplace heat-safety rules,” the White House said in a July 27 fact sheet.
With the unprecedented heat waves most states are experiencing, OSHA also announced it, “will intensify its enforcement where workers are exposed to heat hazards, with increased inspections in high-risk industries like construction…”.
In April, OSHA announced a National Emphasis Program on Heat and in 2021 OSHA began the rulemaking process to consider a heat-specific workplace standard.
Learn more about OSHA’s Heat Illness Prevention Campaign here.