New York City Personal Injury Law Blog

Heat Illness and Injury on the Site

Posted on Sep 7, 2015 in Personal Injury

Among the many dangers that physical trade workers have to look out for, there are seasonal issues that must be addressed by employers. One of them is the risk of illness or injury from excessive heat in hot weather.

A Double Threat

There are many cases in which, without adequate safeguards, workers may simply collapse under the pressure of the combination of physical activity and high heat or humidity. This can involve conditions like heatstroke or sun poisoning. That said, employers have to look out for these kinds of situations.

Another danger is where heat, again, in combination with other job site conditions, can make workers less alert or impair their sight or other senses, or make them start to lose consciousness. Here, the result is a raised risk for various kinds of traumatic accidents, such as trip and fall or equipment accidents.

Protecting Workers

The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has produced an active federal campaign to help employers protect workers from the effects of hot weather. This includes three major aspects — water, rest and shade.
Workers need to be provided a reliable source of fresh, cold water and shady areas in which to rest and get relief from the sun. Adequate break time should be provided, including a drink every 15 minutes, regardless of thirst. Hydration is key to avoiding workplace injury and illness.

All of this is part of established OSHA guidelines developed in cooperation with groups like the Worker Occupational Safety and Health Training and Education Program and the University of California, Berkeley. As this guide points out, heat presents a serious risk and can cause a lot of secondary accidents and conditions. OSHA also recommends obtaining feedback from workers or others onsite and provides testing for those responsible for workplace safety. This guide also points out other conditions that can be relevant, such as:

• A worker’s general physical fitness
• Alcohol or substance use
• Prescription drug use
• Types of clothing
• Previous exposure

Assisting Injury Victims

Personal injury attorneys help injury victims figure out what led to the workplace accident and determine whether they can get adequate compensation to pay for the costs of care and recovery, along with lost wages and other financial impacts.

By bringing a precise knowledge of federal, state and local law, as well as case precedent, injury lawyers help to show their clients what is “normal” or reasonable in local courts by helping them understand the timelines of the process in moving a personal injury case forward. Injury victims rely on such legal professionals to tell their stories, work as their advocates, and make sure their voices are heard.

Finding a New York City Personal Injury Law Firm

If you or a family member has experienced an injury in the New York City area related to the workplace or any other kind of accident, talk to the experienced personal injury attorneys at Rosenberg, Minc, Falkoff & Wolff. Our attorneys will be by your side the entire way through bringing a personal injury claim in New York courts. Let us help you to access your rights under the law.

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